I saw a meme the recently: if 2020 were a movie, it would be written by Stephen King and directed by Quentin Tarantino. The meme game has been strong lately, but it offers a little respite from a really difficult period. My anxiety and depression have slowly crept back. I feel trapped in a heightened state of stress. Not being able to see my friends – my chosen family – because of social distancing has made it especially hard.
The U.S. Supreme Court has delivered a watershed victory for LGBTIQ rights and a defeat for President Donald Trump’s administration by ruling that a longstanding federal law barring workplace discrimination protects gay and transgender employees.
The landmark 6-3 ruling represented the biggest moment for LGBTIQ rights in the United States since the Supreme Court legalized same-sex marriage nationwide in 2015. Two conservative justices joined the court’s four liberals in the decision: Neil Gorsuch, a 2017 Trump appointee who wrote the ruling, and Chief Justice John Roberts.
President Andrzej Duda has vowed to ban teaching about LGBT issues in Poland’s schools in an apparent pitch to his conservative base during an increasingly tight race for the June 28 presidential election.
Duda is an ally of the ruling right-wing nationalist Law and Justice Party (PiS), which brands lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) “ideology” as an invasive foreign influence undermining traditional values in the staunchly Catholic nation.
The controversial function allowed paying users to filter out prospective partners based on ethnicity labels such as “Asian”, “Black” and “Latino”. Long criticised as racist, the filter also helped to create a culture where users were emboldened to express their racism.
Today is Australia’s inaugural LGBTI Domestic Violence Awareness Day, a new initiative to address domestic violence within LGBTIQ relationships.
The Domestic Violence Crisis Service (DVCS) and Meridian (formerly the AIDS Action Council) are working in partnership to promote the day and draw awareness of the occurrence of domestic and family violence within the LGBTIQA+ community.
As a peer-led health service embedded in LGBTIQ+ communities, Meridian (formerly AIDS Action Council) sees the impact of domestic and family violence on LGBTIQ+ people, families, and communities. We also notice the silence that surrounds the issue. We notice it when LGBTIQ+ people, relationships, and families are not included in domestic and family violence prevention and response efforts. And we notice it when we don’t call out violence within our own communities. It’s time to break the silence. Today, Meridian is partnering with the Domestic Violence Crisis Service (DVCS) to shine the spotlight on domestic and family violence within LGBTIQ+ relationships and families.
June is Pride Month in the US and Apple typically celebrates the occasion by launching an accessory or new feature. This year, most Pride parades and gatherings have been cancelled due to COVID-19, but Apple continued the tradition by launching two Pride-themed bands for Apple Watch.
Zambia’s president has pardoned a gay couple sentenced to 15 years in prison in November under colonial-era sodomy laws in a case that caused a diplomatic row with the United States.
Japhet Chataba, 39, and Steven Sambo, 31, were among nearly 3,000 inmates pardoned by President Edgar Lungu last Friday to commemorate Africa Freedom Day, according to the government gazette.
Photo: Volunteers spray disinfectant in the gay Itaewon district of Seoul after a cluster of cases linked to its nightclubs. Yonhap/EPA
Gay Korea: homophobia sparked by Seoul coronavirus cluster driven by Protestant right.
The Korean LGBTQ+ community knew to prepare for an anti-gay onslaught after it emerged that a person with an asymptomatic COVID-19 infection had been partying in Itaewon, a gay nightlife district in the South Korean capital, Seoul. The community is used to being shamed for just living their lives or blamed for spreading disease.
IDAHOBIT stands for the International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia, Interphobia and Transphobia and is held on the 17 May, each year around the world in over 130 countries! But what does all this mean? Minority sexuality and gender identities, and people who are intersex, can face negative attitudes, stereotypes and prejudices that lead to discrimination, exclusion, harassment and violence.
Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic crisis, many vulnerable LGBTQ people around the world are being forced to move back into unsafe domestic spaces. The crisis has created an unprecedented situation.
Beyond the obvious issues around income, housing and food, LGBTQ people are significantly more susceptible to mental health issues due to discrimination and inequalities. For those LGBTQ people moving back into unsafe spaces where they have to either go “back in the closet” or remain silent about their sexuality, the loss of being able to socialise with supportive queer friends and allies is very concerning.
The United Nations has urged countries to protect LGBT+ people against discrimination when seeking health care during the pandemic, saying they may be hesitant to seek medical services and be especially vulnerable to the coronavirus.
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