Saturday, December 01, 2007

GLBT DIGEST December 1, 2007

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Dutch to study gay bashing

Published: Nov. 30, 2007 at 7:51 PM
United Press International

AMSTERDAM , Netherlands, Nov. 30 (UPI)

Netherlands authorities are commissioning a study to determine why Moroccanmen target gays in Amsterdam, considered one of Europe's most gay friendlycities.

Amsterdam has experienced a growing number of attacks on gays and lesbians,Der Spiegel reported Friday. In 2006, the Dutch metropolis registered 32hate crimes directed at gays, but during the first half of 2007, 26 hadalready been counted, the newspaper said.

Mayor Job Cohen commissioned the University of Amsterdam to conduct a studyon the motives behind the attacks.

Half the hate crimes were committed by men of Moroccan origin. Someresearchers believe they lashed out at local gays after feeling stigmatizedby Dutch society, the newspaper said.


From The Times
Archbishop of Canterbury Dr Rowan Williams, at 'secret' gay ceremony

Ruth Gledhill, Religion Correspondent
Read Ruth Gledhill's blog on matters of faith
November 30, 2007

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, presided at a "secret"Eucharist yesterday for lesbian and gay clergy in the Church of England.

At the service, in London, he gave a talk on "present realities andfuture possibilities for lesbians and gay men in the Church". Conservativechurch members condemned the Archbishop, claiming that the service wouldmake him the "focus of division".

The venue, originally scheduled to be St Peter's, Eaton Square,Belgravia, was changed to avoid media attention after news of the meetingemerged on the Church Society website this year. The meeting was organisedby the Clergy Consultation, a support group for gay clergy, ordinands andAnglican monks and nuns. Secrecy was so tight that a list of namesattending was sent to Lambeth Palace with orders that it be shredded as soonas Dr Williams had read it.

The consultation, which has between 250 and 450 members at any one time,was set up in 1976 by three Anglican priests, Malcolm Johnson, Peter Ellersand Douglas Rhymes. Many members are married and faithful to theirpartners. The organisation intends to help them to cope with stayingfaithful to what they regard as a Christian lifestyle while dealing withtheir sexuality.

A spokeswoman said: "The Archbishop of Canterbury is committed to thelistening process which was agreed at the Lambeth Conference [in 1998] aspart of the discussions on human sexuality. That means listening to andengaging with gay and lesbian clergy in a pastorally sensitive setting."

Dr Williams was criticised by evangelicals, who believe that his actionswill be interpreted as an endorsement of the Church's liberal wing. The RevDavid Phillips, general secretary of the Church Society, said: "This is notsomething that should be happening. There is serious doubt in our mindabout some of the people present and their standing because of being inhomosexual relationships. We came to the conclusion a long time ago that[Dr Williams] was not really fit to be Archbishop."



Gay & Lesbian Leadership

Go to the website, above, for the following articles:

Letter: Retired brass call for end of military gay ban - Congress shouldtake immediate steps to strike the 14-year-old military gay ban, accordingto a letter from a group of 28 retired generals and admirals to federallawmakers. "We respectfully urge Congress to repeal the 'don't ask, don'ttell' policy," the former officials wrote. "Those of us signing this letterhave dedicated our lives to defending the rights of our citizens to believewhatever they wish." The New York Times (11/30)

Report: Marriage in Maryland would be economic boon - If Maryland approvedequal marriage rights, the state would reap more than $280 million in newrevenue in the first three years and see a net tax gain of $3.2 million ayear, according to a study by UCLA School of Law's Williams Institute onSexual Orientation Law and Public Policy. The Sun (Baltimore) (freeregistration) (11/29)

Blogger: Poll shows out Senate candidate viable in North Carolina -Citing apoll in which 53% of North Carolina voters said a candidate's sexualorientation would not change their vote or they weren't sure of its impact,blogger Pam Spaulding believes out Democratic U.S. Senate contender Jim Nealdeserves a chance to compete on "equal footing" for the nomination. "TarHeel voters are clearly willing to consider a person's character andexperience, even if it challenges assumptions and prejudices," Spauldingwrites. Read more at Pam's House Blend.


To Form a More Perfect Union: Marriage Equality News

Information, news, and discussion about the legal recognition of same-sexcouples and their families, including marriages, domestic partnerships,civil unions, adoptions, foster children and similar issues.

Go to the website, above, for the following articles:

(Dublin) The Irish government will bring in civil partnership legislation inMarch a cabinet minister told an LGBT group on Friday. Equality MinisterSeam Power said he expects the bill to become law later in 2008.Power,speaking at a symposium on same-sex couple rights, that the government iskeen to have the law passed as quickly as possible and he does not foreseeany resistance from the opposition.The cabinet earlier this month approvedgranting same-sex couples the same rights as married couples, but withoutthe name marriage.A private members bill was introduced last year by LaborParty justice critic Brendan Howlin and was modeled after Britain's civilpartner law. At the time Prime Minister Bertie Ahern said that the billequated civil partnerships with marriage and after warning the legislationwould be rejected by the Supreme Court Parliament his government votedagainst the measure.

Incoming Attorney-General Robert McClelland has said that the Labor party isunlikely to block a re-developed proposal to introduce same-sex civil unionsin the Australian Capital Territory. The news comes as Attorney-General forthe ACT Simon Corbell is planning to submit an amended civil partnershipsbill, which would give same-sex couples legal recognition. In an interviewpublished in the Herald on Friday, Mr McClelland reemphasized that Laborwould not be giving full marriage rights to same-sex couples, but wouldsupport couples having the same legal rights as de facto heterosexualcouples. "I will have a look at what Simon Corbell is proposing and get someadvice on it," Mr McClelland said. "We would be prepared to look at it withgood faith rather than with the intention of obstructing it. The Labor Partyhas already resolved not to agree to gay marriage but we are given toexamining appropriate forms of registration of de facto relationships,including same-sex de facto relationships." Previous attempts to introducesame-sex civil union partnerships in the ACT were overturned by the Howardgovernment.

What was a procedural congressional debate yesterday on whether the Peruviangovernment would adhere to the Iberian-American Convention on the Rights ofYouth - an international treaty that establishes a core set of legalstandards to protect young people - became a heated debate on whether thetreaty would open the door for same-sex marriage in Peru that exposedunexpected legislative support for same-sex partnerships.
As a result, a vote on the treaty was shelved and the resolution was sentback to the Peruvian Commission of International Relations for furtherstudy.At issue, according to La Razon, were articles 5 and 14 which refer tolanguage prohibiting discrimination based on sexual orientation and theright to one's sexual identity and article 20.1 which speaks of the right tobuild a family - which some legislators argued clashed with the Peruvianconstitution.


National Gay News

Go to the website, above, for the following articles:

Activists sought Saturday to keep the battle against HIV in the public eyeon World AIDS Day in the face of growing complacency amid progress intreating and slowing the spread of the disease.Even the Miss World beautypageant on the Chinese holiday island of Sanya was being enlisted to get outthe message that the disease still kills some 6,000 people each day.

The Lower Macungie Township Library board has declined to pull a storybookwith a homosexual theme off the shelf despite complaints from one couple and40 signatures from other residents.Jeff and Eileen Issa demand that thelibrary remove the book "King & King." The library board refused for asecond time on Thursday.

On Oct. 12, California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger signed six billssupporting the protection of gay, bisexual and transgender youth. TheEquality California group supported those six bills.One of the bills passedwas SB777, Student Civil Rights Act bill. This bill protects students, inpublic schools, from being harassed and bullied. Also, it permits gay,transgender or other sexual preference students to enter and use therestroom or locker room of their choice, to feel more comfortable.

Home to the sexy tango dance and swarthy meat-eaters, this South Americancapital has long been thought of as a bastion of macho attitudes. But a newhotel here is adding to the city's growing image as a bastion ofgay-friendliness.The Axel Hotel, a Spanish import, has come to symbolize anincreasingly aggressive effort by Buenos Aires to court gay dollars andeuros. Earlier this month the city swung its doors open to the Axel, LatinAmerica's first luxury hotel built exclusively with gays in mind.

President Bush urged Congress on Friday to approve an additional $30 billionfor the fight against AIDS worldwide over the next five years, and announcedhe would visit Africa early next year to further highlight the need and hisadministration's efforts."We dedicate ourselves to a great purpose: We willturn the tide against HIV/AIDS - once and for all," Bush said. "I lookforward to seeing the results of America's generosity."

A primary polling pop-quiz: among what group of reliably Democratic votersdoes Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton's support top 60 percent? The answer:Lesbians, gays and bisexuals. A new poll from Hunter College finds that 63percent of likely voters in this bloc support Clinton, while 22 percent backIllinois Sen. Barack Obama and 7 percent are for former senator John Edwards(N.C.).Clinton's lead is cushioned by wide advantages in favorability andperceptions of her support for gay and lesbian rights.

A Republican gay rights advocacy group accuses Mitt Romney of "Mitt-flops"in a new radio ad that criticizes the former Massachusetts governor on histax record.The ad by the Log Cabin Republicans notes that Romney signedlegislation in 2003 that increased taxes on New Hampshire residents whoworked in Massachusetts. It also says Romney raised taxes on businesses, apoint Romney disputes by saying he was merely closing tax loopholes.

In Fall 2008, Russia's first ever lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgenderedfilm festival is to take place in the city of Saint Petersburg. In a societywhere sexual diversity is not openly discussed and more commonly met withwide condemnation the organizers, Side by Side ("Bok o Bok"), aim to createa cultural space that will not only allow for the celebration of lesbian andgay lives but establish contact with society at large, fundamentally leadingto broader understanding and acceptance of minority groups. Film and videosubmissions for the Side by Side film festival are now open.


30 November 2007

For immediate release

ILGA-Europe marks the World AIDS Day by launching a web-based guide oninternational human rights law on sexual and reproductive health

On 30 November 2007, to commemorate the World AIDS Day, ILGA-Europe launchesan electronic guide to international human rights references to sexual andreproductive health and rights (SRHR) as related to lesbian, gay, bisexualand transgender (LGBT) people, HIV/AIDS and sexually transmitted infections.

ILGA-Europe has created the guide to assist advocates to identify, interpretand apply existing international instruments and standards in their work.There is a particular focus on commitments and progress made by somecountries of the ex-Soviet block in relation to comprehensive prevention ofHIV/AIDS and other sexually transmitted infections (STIs) among LGBT people.

The reference guide is a part of a joint project "Prevention and Empowermentin the Commonwealth of Independent States" (PRECIS), coordinated by COCNetherlands and financed by the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Theproject aims at improving sexual and reproductive health and enhancing humanrights of LGBT people in seven countries of Eastern Europe and Central Asia:Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, Moldova and Ukraine.

Maxim Anmeghichean, Programmes Director of ILGA-Europe, said:

"Currently there is a limited knowledge among LGBT activists of thecommitments on sexual and reproductive health and rights made by nationalgovernments in international forums such as the UN. We hope our guide willbecome a helpful and effective human rights advocacy resource for theactivists in their work locally, nationally and internationally. The guideis designed to increase their knowledge of the relevant references and theirplace within international human rights law and discourse. It will alsoenable the activists to hold their governments accountable forimplementation of these international commitments.



Canada Approves AIDS Drug Isentress

by The Canadian Press
Posted: December 1, 2007 - 6:30 am ET

(Toronto, Ontario) Health Canada has granted license approval for a newHIV-AIDS drug, the first in a promising new class of medications.

Drug maker Merck Frosst says it has been given permission to bring Isentressto the Canadian market for treatment of HIV-positive people whose virusesare resistant to multiple other HIV drugs.

AIDS expert Dr. Mark Wainberg says there is tremendous optimism about thedrug in the community of HIV patients, doctors and researchers.

The drug's generic name is raltegravir.

It is the first in a new class of drugs known as integrase inhibitors to hitthe global AIDS drug market; another drug, eltegravir, is in development byGilead Sciences Inc. of Foster City, CA.

more . . . . .


Legal Challenge To Wisconsin Anti-Gay Amendment Allowed To Proceed

by Newscenter Staff
Posted: November 30, 2007 - 7:30 pm ET

(Madison, Wisconsin) A judge has rejected a motion from the state ofWisconsin to dismiss a lawsuit challenging a constitutional amendment thatbars same-sex marriage and blocks the state from recognizing civil unions.

The amendment to the state constitution was passed last year by 59 percentof voters.

The lawsuit was filed in June by University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh politicalscience instructor William McConkey.

McConkey, who describes himself as a "Christian, straight, married" fatherof nine and grandfather of seven, says in the lawsuit that the question putto voters was illegal because it contained two questions - one regardingmarriage and a second involving civil unions. Wisconsin law requires onlyone question be put to voters at a time.

The lawsuit also claims that the amendment violates the equal protectionclause of the U.S. Constitution.

more . . . . .


Man, Christian Coalition Guilty In Canadian Human Rights Gay Case

by The Canadian Press
Posted: November 30, 2007 - 7:30 pm ET

(Calgary, Alberta) An Alberta man who has pressed for five years to get ananti-gay letter branded as hate literature won a victory Friday with a humanrights commission ruling that said it broke provincial law and may even haveplayed a role in the beating of a gay teenager.

The letter, written by Stephen Boissoin and published in the Red DeerAdvocate in 2002, carried the headline ``Homosexual agenda wicked'' andsuggested gays were as immoral as pedophiles, drug dealers and pimps.

Darren Lund, a high school teacher in Red Deer at the time, complained tothe Alberta Human Rights Commission after the teenager was beaten in thecity two weeks after the letter was published.

In Friday's ruling, commission panel chairwoman Lori Andreachuk said bothBoissoin and the Concerned Christian Coalition to which he belonged brokeprovincial human rights law by likely exposing gays to hatred and contempt.

``I find that there is a circumstantial connection between the hate speechof Mr. Boissoin and the CCC and the beating of a gay teenager in Red Deerless than two weeks following the publication of Mr. Boissoin's letter,''Andreachuk wrote.

more . . . . .


Hostage Taking At Clinton NH Campaign Office Ends Peacefully

by The Associated Press
Posted: November 30, 2007 - 2:00 pm ET

(Rochester, New Hampshire) A mentally unstable man wearing what appeared tobe a bomb strapped to his chest was arrested hours after he walked into aHillary Rodham Clinton campaign office Friday, took hostages and demanded tospeak to the candidate in a standoff that dragged into the night,authorities said.

Clinton was in the Washington area at the time, but the confrontationbrought her campaign to a standstill just five weeks before the NewHampshire primary, one of the first tests of the presidential campaignseason. She canceled all appearances, as did her husband, and the securityaround her was increased as a precaution.

In an early evening news conference, Capt. Paul Callaghan repeatedly refusedto say how many hostages had been taken.

The man entered the simple storefront office along the town's main streetaround 1 p.m., ordered people onto the floor and then let a mother and herbaby leave, said State Police Maj. Michael Hambrook.

About two hours later, a woman in a green sweater was led away from thebuilding by a SWAT team member. Authorities, some carrying shields and guns,had the building surrounded.

more . . . . .


28 Retired Top Military Leaders Call For End To Gay Ban

by Newscenter Staff
Posted: November 30, 2007 - 11:00 am ET

(Washington) On the 14th anniversary of the signing of "Don't Ask, Don'tTell," 28 retired, high-ranking military leaders have joined the call torepeal the ban on gays serving openly in the armed forces.

That brings to over 60 the number of high-ranking former officers who haveendorsed a call for repeal by former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of StaffJohn Shalikashvili in January. (story)

"We support the recent comments of . former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs,General John Shalikashvili, who has concluded that repealing the "Don't Ask,Don't Tell" policy would not harm, and would indeed help, our armed forces,"the letter from the 28 to members of Congress states.

"Those of us signing this letter have dedicated our lives to defending therights of our citizens to believe whatever they wish" the retired generalsand admirals said, noting that it is estimated there are 65,000 gays andlesbians currently serve in the American armed forces and that there aremore than one million gay veterans.

"They have served our nation honorably," the letter states.

more . . . . .


Forwarded from Bill Sterling

Los Angeles Times,1,3831287.story?coll=la-headlines-nation

An ex-soldier who hid his sexuality to avoid being discharged under the law and other opponents mark the policy's 14th anniversary.

By Theo Milonopoulos
Los Angeles Times Staff Writer

December 1 2007

WASHINGTON — When President Bush stopped at the bedside of injured Marine Staff Sgt. Eric Alva in 2003 here, he was visiting one of the first Americans seriously wounded in the Iraq war.

Alva's right leg was amputated after he stepped on a land mine near Basra on the day the ground war began.

What the president didn't know was that Alva is gay.

Alva, who was medically discharged and awarded a Purple Heart, said he hid his sexual orientation to avoid being discharged under the law prohibiting gays and lesbians from serving openly in the military.

But earlier this year, Alva added his voice to a growing clamor from veterans and others calling for an end to the "don't ask, don't tell" policy. And on Friday on the National Mall, he pressed his case at a gathering of groups calling for its repeal.

"It is time for this country to move forward like the rest of the world and stop oppressing people for who they are," Alva said at the event, which coincided with the law's 14th anniversary.

In recent years, more than 3,600 soldiers have been discharged under the policy, according to the Defense Department. An analysis of department statistics by the Servicemembers Legal Defense Network, an advocacy group providing legal services for those discharged under the policy, found that since the edict took effect, it has led to the dismissal of more than 11,000 men and women.

And a 2005 report by the Government Accountability Office found that those ischarged included some with expertise in intelligence operations or knowledge of Arabic, Farsi or Korean.



Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List

Fenty vows renewed HIV fight Gay
New report shows D.C. has highest AIDS rate in the country

Friday, November 30, 2007

A long-awaited report released this week by the D.C. HIV/AIDS Administration showing that about 12,500 people in the city had HIV or AIDS in 2006 brought renewed promises from the administration to fight the disease.

Men accounted for more than twice the number of new HIV infections than women in Washington between 2001 and 2006, and men who have sex with men - both white and black - had the highest HIV infection rates among the city's male population, according to the report.

The 120-page report shows that HIV was transmitted through men who have sex with men, referred to by AIDS researchers as MSM, in 25.8 percent of the HIV cases reported between that five-year period.

MSM transmission accounted for 71.3 percent of the HIV cases among white men during that time period, the report shows. MSM transmission comprised 33.4 percent of the HIV cases among black men, a figure higher than the 28.8 percent of black male HIV cases transmitted by heterosexual sex, according to the report.



Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List


HIV and mobility: Travel and residence regulations for HIV+ people

Dear friends, dear LBGT, Human Rights and HIV/Aids campaigners andactivists,

As a resource for travelers around the world, Karl Lemmen and Peter Wiessnerof the German AIDS Federation and European Aids Treatment Group (EATG) andDavid Haerry (EATG) have put together Travel and Residence Regulations forPeople with HIV and AIDS 2007, which is now available online through ILGA.

This latest edition reflect the most up-to-date information available in2007 and includes a specific section on entering the United States ofAmerica in spite of state-sponsored discrimination still in vigor.

An online version in English is available on the website of the EuropeanAids Treatment Group at

PDF documents are available in the following languages: English, French,
German, Italian, Spanish at


Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List

Saturday, July 19 to Thursday, July 24, 2008
Towson University, Towson, MD
Registration Starts January 2008


Campus Pride is currently taking applications to be considered as campfaculty for the 2008 Campus Pride Summer Leadership Camp. Responsibilitiesof camp include but are not limited to the following: program planning,fundraising, grant writing, promotions, on-site event execution, mentoringcampers, program delivery and, most importantly, a belief in the mission ofCampus Pride--to build future LGBT & Ally leaders and safer, moreLGBT-Friendly colleges and universities. Time commitment is an estimated 15hours per month and on-site attendance at camp. Travel, meals and lodgingare paid for your service during camp. If interested, please read over andsubmit the following faculty application before Wednesday, December 19,2007. Download 2008 Faculty Application online . Email us with any questions or issuesdownloading the application at

For more information please visit:


Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List

Experts endorse European plan to reduce late HIV diagnosis

Keith Alcorn, Friday, November 30, 2007

An international meeting of clinicians, patient advocates and policy makershas endorsed plans to promote earlier diagnosis of HIV infection throughoutEurope, in order to reduce the numbers who are still diagnosed with AIDS ordie from it in Europe.

The HIV in Europe 2007 conference was convened by the Cophenhagen UniversityAIDS Programme, WHO Europe, AIDS Action Europe, the European AIDS ClinicalSociety, the European AIDS Treatment Group and numerous other groupsinvolved in HIV care and advocacy in the EU.

The meeting's Call for Action, endorsed by around 100 organisations presentat the two-day meeting in Brussels earlier this week, urges all keystakeholders involved in HIV care to:

* Acknowledge that earlier diagnosis and care is urgently needed toimprove the lives of people living with HIV and reduce transmission
* Develop more precise estimates - size, characteristics, etc - of theundiagnosed population
* Communicate the benefits of earlier care and reduce perceived barriersto testing
* Implement evidence-based testing and treatment guidelines in everycountry
* Commit the necessary political, financial and human resources fortheir timely implementation.



Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List

We need your support!

Please find below details of the 1st Brazilian National Conference for LGBT.It will be a very significant event for LGBT rights in Brazil. 700 peopleare expected to take part (60% civil society and 40% government). TheConference is being organized by the government.

There is strong opposition from religious fundamentalists and at this timeit is important to provide support and congratulate the President and theMinister for Human Rights.

E-mails congratulating the initiative can be sent to:

Mr. Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva
President of Brazil

Mr. Paulo Vannuchi
Minister for Human Rights

Please send a copy of your e-mail to presidê

Many thanks
Toni Reis
ABGLT - Brazilian Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Association



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