August, 2015 / Author:

Local

New light thrown on LGBT issues

Twice this coming school year, the teachers at St. John’s-Ravenscourt School will spend half an in-service day reaching a greater understanding of gay, lesbian and other non-heterosexual students.

“My colleagues are craving this kind of professional development,” said Matt Henderson, the award-winning and outspoken social studies teacher at SJR.

“We have Rainbow Resource Centre coming here in mid-November to do a big staff thing,” and they’ll be back in January, Henderson said.

“Teachers are relatively progressive by nature — that’s why we get into the job, we care about people,” he said.

Read the full article in the Winnipeg Free Press.

National

Liberals would create housing for senior gay men, Fry says

More than 100 people turned out at Vancouver’s Odyssey nightclub Sept 10 to see the front-runner candidates vying for Vancouver Centre’s seat in Parliament debate some of the most important issues facing the LGBT community this election.

The debate was lively between incumbent Liberal Hedy Fry, Constance Barnes from the NDP, and Lisa Barrett from the Green Party.

Missing from the debate was Conservative candidate Elaine Allan, whose camp had not responded to numerous invitations to attend. An empty chair with a name placard marked her empty spot.

The candidates fielded a diverse range questions from a community panel and from audience members both at the debate and watching it live on streaming video.

Read the full article in Daily Xtra.

Toronto organization seeks help to resettle LGBT Syrians

A Canadian organization is raising funds to bring lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Syrian refugees to Canada, as calls to resettle thousands of migrants and refugees from the war-torn region increase.

Justin Taylor, the executive director of the Toronto-based Rainbow Railroad, says that before September 2014, the organization hadn’t had a request from a Syrian person requesting assistance. This year, Rainbow Railroad has had 16 asylum seekers approach them directly, as well as word of many more who are currently in Jordan and Lebanon.

“We’ve been in touch with people who run safe houses and there’s a ton more cases that just didn’t know about Rainbow Railroad until now.”

Read the full article in Daily Xtra.

Calgary Transit driver Jesse Rau fired over pride bus controversy

Jesse Rau, the Christian bus driver who said he would quit his job with Calgary Transit if forced to drive the city’s rainbow-coloured pride bus because of his religious beliefs, has been fired.

Rau received a termination of employment letter from the City of Calgary on Thursday for breaching code of conduct and the city’s media relations policy.

Read the full article at CBC.

TIFF: ‘Freeheld’ stars tackle LGBT topics

Julianne Moore figures it’s always a good time to tell an important love story like the one in her new film Freeheld. Right now, however, there may be more folks ready to listen than ever.

With gay rights, same-sex marriage and LGBT issues in the headlines almost daily, the lineup at this year’s Toronto International Film Festival has followed suit, debuting a number of high-profile projects delving into those timely themes that premiere in the coming months.

Read the full article in USA Today.

International

Kim Davis files appeal to continue denying same-sex marriage licences

A Kentucky county clerk who was recently jailed for denying same-sex couples marriage licences filed an appeal Friday that would allow her to continue blocking the licences.

Kim Davis filed the motion with the Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals.

Davis, the elected clerk for Rowan County, Ky., objects to same-sex marriage on religious grounds. She has said that as an Apostolic Christian, she believes it is a sin and refuses to violate her conscience by signing her name on the licences.

Read the full article at CBC.

Kentucky clerk Kim Davis released from jail after judge lifts contempt ruling

A Kentucky county clerk emerged from jail on Tuesday, six days after a federal judge put her behind bars for refusing to issue marriage licenses to gay couples, as her attorneys reasserted their argument that licenses issued in her absence are “not valid.”

With tears in her eyes, and having taken to the stage to the tune of Survivor’s Eye of the Tiger, Kim Davis thanked a crowd for their support.

Read the full article in The Guardian.

LGBT film festival celebrates Kenya’s shunned gay community

With homosexuality illegal in Kenya, its capital Nairobi is an unlikely – and potentially dangerous – place to openly host an LGBT film festival celebrating gay culture.

But on Thursday night, a young crowd packed into an auditorium in the city centre to attend the Out festival, an event hailed as a key step towards encouraging public discourse on LGBT issues in the country.

On the opening night of the four-day programme, festival goers watched the British film Pride, based on the true story of a group of lesbian and gay activists who raised money to help families affected by the British miners’ strike in 1984, and an episode of American sci-fi series Sense8, depicting transgendered and interracial couples.

Read the full article in The Guardian.

 

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