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March 5, 2015

Utah lawmakers have unveiled legislation to protect LGBT individuals against employment and housing discrimination while also protecting religious freedoms

Lawmakers in Utah are today discussing anti-discrimination legislation which they believe could keep both LGBTI campaigners happy and those with strongly held religious beliefs concerning homosexuality.

The proposed legislation, SB296, has receiving the backing of the Mormon church.

March 3, 2015

Will it become the first Central European country with marriage equality?

Slovenia could become the first Central European country with marriage equality following a vote tonight (3 March).

Parliamentarians will vote on the same-sex marriage bill, with a vote planned for around 7pm local time. If passed, it will be sent to President Borut Pahor to be signed into law. 

Suggested by the opposition party United Left (ZL), the sponsors of the bill said Slovenia's constitution calls for all members of society to be provided with equal rights, and the bill will extend those to rights to all groups.

March 2, 2015

 Lake Wörthersee goes gay for the 8th edition of the festival

Austria's Pink Lake International LGBT Festival will take place at the gorgeous Lake Wörthersee in Velden this September, from 3-6.

The 8th edition of the four-day party goes against the grain of other gay events commonly held in blockbuster cities, with its beautiful, intimate, unspoiled location.

March 1, 2015

'The parade is an important way for Guinness to support the Irish community, and we look forward to celebrating with millions of New Yorkers on March 17'

Guinness is returning as a sponsor of the New York City St. Patrick's Day Parade.

February 26, 2015

Measure is approved 'for the protection of children from harmful information'

The Senate of Kazakhstan has passed a bill banning 'propaganda of a non-traditional sexual orientation.'

The upper house of the Kazakh parliament approved the measure on 19 February 'for the protection of children from information harmful to their health and development.'

Aldan Smayil, a member of the Majilis (the lower chamber of the Kazakh parliament), proposed prohibiting 'gay propaganda' in August 2013.

February 26, 2015

Formerly a sales director in the printing industry, Lowe – now retired – decided to come out after a heart attack in his early 40s made him realize the importance of living life on his own terms

As a young man I followed a logic common among gay men back in the day. ‘Yes, I am gay. But in the corporate world there is no need to mention it. Just climb the greasy pole and keep a 'straight' face.’

I thought that was the best way to get by – no ripples, no fuss.

My outlook changed when I suffered a heart attack at age of 43. I started to live for the day, as I knew all too well that there may not be a tomorrow. At that point I came out – not loudly, but softly.

February 25, 2015

Al, who works in human resources with a US pharmaceuticals company, says that society still has a long way to go in full workplace equality

I selectively came out seven years ago, while working at a pharma-biotech company in New Jersey. My marriage to a woman was coming to an end and I had finally come to grips with my sexual orientation.

Selectively coming out? Yes. I was only comfortable coming out to those I thought would be supportive. The workplace was off limits.

February 25, 2015

Republican Governor Asa Hutchinson allows automatic passage to be triggered without his signature

A bill in Arkansas that blocks cities and counties from passing anti-discrimination laws more expansive than the state's became law on Tuesday (24 February).

Republican Governor Asa Hutchinson did not sign what critics see as an anti-LGBTI bill into law but allowed it to move forward without his signature.

In Arkansas, a bill can become a law with the governor’s signature or it can be passed following five days with no action made against it.

February 25, 2015

An Inclusiveness Director for EY, Chris Crespo has come to realize the importance of confronting one’s fears

‘What if you weren't afraid?

I heard that question about a decade ago, and it was a turning point for me. Someone — I don’t recall who it was — came up with that question at a session I was attending.

It was right around the time I and others at EY were forming Beyond, our professional network supporting and promoting our LGBTA employees.

February 25, 2015

The Scotland-born traveller on her adopted hometown and its treasures

I've lived here since… 2011. I stayed because I love the tropical climate, and for my job as General Manager of Asia tour operators Backyard Travel.

For culture, you can't miss… the Grand Palace and the Temple of the Emerald Buddha. Then Wat Pho, a Buddhist temple and the Old City area. There are so many parts to Thai culture, that there’s not one single place where you can really comprehend all aspects of it, but this area is a good starting point.

February 25, 2015

Reporting analyst, Bank of America Merrill Lynch - Banking

"Have faith in those around you"

I’ve been at Bank of America Merrill Lynch for nine years, but my “whole self” has been at work for less than a third of this time.

February 25, 2015

Don’t ask the Oscars to care about us. Just stop caring about the Oscars

With the pomp and circumstance of the weekend’s Oscar extravaganza quickly fading it’s time for the annual deluge of op-eds and finger wagging about the lack of diversity at the Academy Awards.

The din of outrage over what attributes the winners have (or should have) becomes more intense every year. 2015 marked the year that conversations about minority representation finally drowned out the red carpet scrutiny over who-wore-who. Some colours are simply never as in as others during awards season.

February 22, 2015

Jamaican singer Queen Ifrica says reggae singers use homophobic lyrics to get cheers and applause from audiences

A Jamaican reggae singer has defended her use of anti-gay lyrics in her music, saying she uses them to get applause and cheers from the audience.

Ventrice Morgan, who goes by the stage name of Queen Ifrica, says such lyrics are only about getting a reaction from the crowd and not about inciting violence or hatred.

‘A lot of these artists who were using homophobic lyrics, were never about inciting violence,’ she says.

‘It was about getting a forward – an applause – from the crowd.'

February 20, 2015

What's life like for a modern gay guy in New York City? Hell's Kitchen, Chelsea, and Fire Island are your go-to neighbourhoods.

He lives in New York City. He loves fashion. He works hard at the gym. He loves to party. Michael Massetti could be the poster boy for a lot of aspirational gays around the world. We spoke with him recently and asked for his local's guide to living in the city that never sleeps.

When did you move to New York City?

I've lived here since august 2011 and I've stayed because I love the opportunities the city constantly gives me.

Best gay bar?

February 17, 2015

Rumors of censorship and vandalism spark social media campaign

A Philippines clothing brand has responded to controversy over a billboard featuring a gay couple holding hands.

However, their interlocking fingers were blacked out on a billboard unveiled last week in Manila.

Rumors that the Ad Standards Council (ASC) had ordered their hands to be painted over or Bench defaced the ad as a marketing ploy sparked a social media campaign with the hashtag #PaintTheirHandsBack.

February 14, 2015

Beaches, BBQs, and a brilliant outdoor lifestyle in New Zealand.

He's only recently moved to Auckland from the UK, but Jason Parmenter is loving his adopted home. 

If you're planning a trip to New Zealand then Jason has some insider hints and tips to help you make the most out of your visit.

Why Auckland?
I've made Auckland home because.the lifestyle here is great and the summer here actually deserves the title.

February 12, 2015

Founder of Out In The Vineyard shares his love of his heart-warmingly beautiful hometown

I've lived here since… The year 2000, when a tech job brought me back home to wine country. Sonoma Valley was the mid-point between my handsome partner, Brian's work and mine. I never would have imagined being in rural America again, after having grown up here, but it’s been an incredible place to enjoy a luxury lifestyle with great friends, incredible cuisine and of course, luscious wine.

February 11, 2015

The driving force behind Latin dance club Exilio shares her love for her adopted city.

A London resident since 1985, Gloria Lizcano runs Exilio - the longest-running LGBT Latin Dance club in London - Lizcano has been helping Londoners to move their hips since 1996.

Why did you relocate your life to the UK?
I've stayed because I fell in love with London. London gives us the opportunity to be free, to be able to say I'm gay and not be afraid of getting killed, to be able to express love and not be frightened

February 11, 2015

Writer/director Ira Sachs talks exclusively with Gay Star News about his inspirations and influences that shaped this delicate story.

With his latest movie, Love Is Strange, about to open across the UK, we spoke by telephone with writer/director Ira Sachs to get beneath the skin of this delicate exploration of love, relationships, and family.

February 6, 2015

The Hollywood local shares some insider tips on how to get the best out of his home town.

Here at Gay Star Travel we like to bring you a local perspective on cities and destinations around the world.

If you're thinking about visiting Los Angeles, then you'll probably need some of local-boy Anthony Duran's insider hints and tips on how to navigate your way around this spawling city.

Apart from three years living in Australia, Duran has lived his entire life in Hollywood. From his teenage years dancing the nights away in the clubs of LA to his weekend mini-breaks to Palm Springs.

February 5, 2015

How to find the best dumplings and other insider secrets from the Australian football enthusiast.

Born and raised in the city's western suburbs, Brian Peel is a presenter on JOY 94.9 – Melbourne's LGBTI radio station.

We caught up with him recently to share some travel stories.

How would you describe Melbourne's western suburbs.
They breed them tough out our way! The area has such a great cultural mix of nationalities. I am of the Maltese kind, born here but speak the language and absolutely adore the food.

February 3, 2015

The activist, journalist and author on his cosmopolitan hometown

Journalist and author Paul Burston was born in York and grew up in South Wales, but he has called London home since 1984. An activist in ACT UP for many years before becoming a journalist, Burston was the long-term editor of Time Out's gay and lesbian section.

February 2, 2015

The author of 'What Happened to Marilyn' shares some tips on where to find the best margarita and more

Author Alexander Rigby has lived in Pittsburgh since 2008 when he began college in the city. We caught up with the writer extraordinaire recently for some inside tips on what makes Pittsburgh a great place to live.

What kept you in Pittsburgh after you graduated?
I stayed because it's a beautiful city that has a lot to offer – in terms of job opportunities, great dining options, fun nightlife, culture, entertainment venues. And it is relatively LGBT friendly.

February 1, 2015

Some 5,000 people marched in the Indian city's eighth and one of the largest pride parades

'He's gay and I'm happy,' said Pradip Divgikar who marched with his son Sushant at the 5000-strong march in Mumbai on Saturday.

'I want all parents of LGBTQ children to be like him,' the son, who represented India at the Mr Gay World competition last year, said of his father in India's DNA newspaper.

According to DNA, parents of LGBTI children formed a substantial chunk of the marchers.