LGBulleTIn #11The week in LGBTI news from around the world
August 15-21, 2015
Saturday, August 15
China: activist sues ministry of Education over textbooks’ content
The No.1 Intermediate People's Court in Beijing accepted a lawsuit against China’s ministry of Education over textbooks that speak about homosexuality as a “psychological disorder”, even though it was removed from the country’s official list of mental illnesses in 2001. The suit was filed by Qiu Bai, a 20-year-old university student from the province of Guangdong: "When I was experiencing an identity crisis”, she told The Global Times, “I tried to seek help by consulting these textbooks. But the wrong information has hurt me as well as other students like me”. She said several official complaints had gone unanswered before the Bejing court accepted her lawsuit.
Sunday, August 16
United Kingdom: 1 in 2 young people say they are not 100% heterosexual
Asked to plot themselves on a “sexuality scale” based on the pattern invented by Alfred Kinsey in the 1940s, 23% of British people choose something other than 100% heterosexual. The figure rises to 49% among 18-24 year olds, a result that YouGov describes as “particularly striking”: “With each generation, people see their sexuality as less fixed in stone, (and) accept the idea that sexual orientation exists along a continuum rather than a binary choice”.
Read the full poll results and a comment on the Guardian
Monday, August 17
Australia: Marriage Equality bill introduced to Parliament
Despite its little chances of success after the Coalition decided to block any conscience vote on the issue, the cross-party Marriage Equality bill was introduced to the House of Representatives by MP Warren Entsch. “This bill does not create different classes of marriage”, he said during the presentation. “[…] It is designed to promote an inclusive Australia, not a divided one”.
Earlier on, Prime Minister Tony Abbott said he would be disappointed if any of his backbenchers voted against party policy. According to The Guardian, though, three of them have already announced they would cross the floor to vote for the multi-party bill, if it ever came to a vote.
Read more on Star Observer
Tuesday, August 18
United States: White House hires its first openly trans official
Raffi Freedman-Gurspan is making history as the first out trans person to ever work in the West Wing: she will serve in the White House Office of Presidential Personnel as an outreach and recruitment director.
A former policy adviser at the National Center for Transgender Equality (NCTE), Freedman-Gurspan has also worked to address violence against trans women of color, an issue that continues to make headlines as 17 trans persons have already been murdered in the United States since the beginning of 2015.
Read more on Buzzfeed
Wednesday, August 19
Colombia: five LGBTI defenders killed in the first months of 2015
In the first six months of 2015, 34 human rights defenders were killed in Colombia: a report filed by Programa Somos Defensores indicates that at least five of them were members of the LGBTI community. Most of the perpetrators of these murder remain unknown. “(These data) cast a shadow on the true value of the words of the government on peace and human rights”, says report, also because the overall number of defenders who have been victims of some kind of aggression in 2015 has already reached 399.
Read more (in Español) via ILGA LAC
Thursday, August 20
Ugandan minister pushes for regional ban on adoption from countries where same-sex marriage is legal
Shem Bageine, Uganda’s state minister for East African Affairs, is pushing to have people coming from countries where same-sex marriage is legal barred from adopting children from the five member states of the East African Community (Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania and his own homeland). His appeal was made before members of the EAC Legislative Assembly who are sitting in the Ugandan Parliament.
"I don’t think the Hon. Minister has the best interests of the children at his heart", director of Out and Proud Diamond Group Edwin Sesange told Gay Star News. "Children deserve love, care and a stable family".