Latest News
Home > LGBT News (page 15)

LGBT News

Condoms are now free in Washington State to those with insurance

Over-the-counter contraceptives, such as condoms, are now free to Washington State residents with health insurance. The Reproductive Parity Act Following six years of Republican obstruction, the Reproductive Parity Act was finally passed last year. Starting on 1 January 2019, Washingtonians with state-regulated health insurance (including Medicaid) can pick up over-the-counter contraceptives at their in-network pharmacies for no cost. According to the Office of the Insurance Commissioner of Washington State, these contraceptives include ‘condoms, spermicides, emergency contraceptives, and sponges.’ Additionally, this new policy also covers sterilizations and vasectomies, as well as free abortions to those whose health plans cover maternity services. What people are saying Various Washington-based politicians, advocacy groups, and organizations praised this new law. Reproductive health care is health care. Pleased that the Reproductive Parity Act went into law this month https://t.co/IQJpQRqgH9 — Jay Inslee (@JayInslee) January 10, 2019 Countless women in WA will live healthier lives thanks to the advocates & lawmakers who fought for years to pass the Reproductive Parity Act. #reprorights #familyplanning #waleg #PuttingPeopleFirst https://t.co/ZnOQP0k9zP — WA Senate Democrats (@WASenDemocrats) January 10, 2019 People benefitting from the new law also expressed their excitement and gratitude on social media. About to go in for surgery to get my tubes removed – yay permanent birth control and boo – they tried to collect a $50 copay 🙁 I tried to educate them about the ACA preventive benefit and the WA reproductive parity act but the front desk people had no clue – I didn’t pay — rebeccastob (@rebeccastob) ...

Read More »

Bisexual actor Amber Heard shares why she decided to come out

Amber Heard, the bisexual actor currently starring in DC’s Aquaman movie, reveals the reason she decided to come out publicly. She recently spoke to Italian newspaper IO Donna about her relationship with photographer Tasya van Ree. The couple was together from 2008 to 2012, before it ended and Heard married Johnny Depp. While answering a question about making professional choices, Heard told the newspaper she has a ‘duty to give something back’. Heard initially came out at GLAAD’s 25th anniversary event in 2010. Her relationship with Ree also became public then. On this time period and decision, Heard said : ‘It was a period when my colleagues were increasingly demanding privacy and in the meantime being bisexual was considered a taboo.’* She continued by stating that ‘to be silent about something means to admit underneath that that thing is wrong’. She knew, however, it wasn’t wrong and that was why she came out. As her comments continued, Heard revealed being truth could ‘offer young people someone to recognize, since those of my generation had grown up without any model of reference’. On Hollywood and Depp In the interview, Heard also answered a question about whether or not Hollywood is really as liberal as it seems. ‘It is an industry full of fashionable people and noble ideals, but it does all the opposite of what it preaches,’ she said. In further describing Hollywood, she said it often repeats all the same ideas based on what people approve. This, however, is not ...

Read More »

Laverne Cox’s advice on finding love is a thoughtful and necessary reminder

Trans actor Laverne Cox shared dating and love advice on Twitter Thursday night (10 January). The message was sweet and thoughtful, and many people loved it. The whole thing started when a mother tweeted to Cox about her trans daughter. ‘This is my oldest child Trinity,’ DeShanna wrote. ‘She’s trans & a gamer & awesome. She’s 15 & transitioned when she was 4. She’s made history here in DE. She’s my .’ Her tweet ended with an appeal to Cox to share an affirming message because Trinity doesn’t think she’ll find love being black and transgender. Dear @Lavernecox This is my oldest child Trinity. She’s trans & a gamer & awesome. She’s 15 & transitioned when she was 4. She’s made history here in DE. She’s my ❤. But she thinks she wont ever find love becuz she’s Black & trans. Can u send her a message saying otherwise? pic.twitter.com/RplfcjU801 — DeShanna N (@Trinsmamabear) January 11, 2019 Cox is currently in a relationship with real estate agent Kyle Draper. She first announced her relationship in March 2018 before sharing a photo of the pair the following month. They both often make sentimental posts about one another on Instagram. In December, Draper posted a photo of them, followed by a lengthy caption about dating a trans woman. It began with him posting the laughing-crying emoji directed at ‘the haters who think calling me “gay” because I’m dating a trans woman is a putdown that will make feel insecure about myself and my ...

Read More »

Vietnam’s ‘femme queer on the streets, dom top in the sheets’

‘My existence is a story to be told about gender politics, about defying what society says is masculine, feminine, what’s accepted and what is not’ says Vietnamese graphic designer Dan Ni. In a new documentary, Dating with Dan Ni, the 24-year-old delves into LGBTI Vietnam’s world of online dating, polyamory, and femininity. Asia’s leading LGBTI film streaming service GagaOOLala will screen it this Friday (11 January). Dan Ni, a part-time model and drag performer and a ‘full-time queen’, challenges stereotypes that tops should look buff and act straight. ‘I’m being my truest self’ he told Gay Star News. Vietnam’s full-time queen Dan Ni (Photo: Facebook) His world of lace, sequins, fishnet and rhinestones battles femme-shaming and masculine ideals within the gay community. Dan Ni’s self-proclaimed ‘big gun’ also helps, apparently. His Facebook profile once identified himself as a ‘femme queer on the streets, dom top in the sheets’. ‘The thing I want to achieve most is to plant a seed in people’s heads, so that the next time they see a kid who’s different from the norm, they will give said kid an easier time’ he told Gay Star News. Dan Ni also talked to Queer Asia about his open relationship with his American boyfriend Shay. ‘The premise of having an open relationship is not because we want to sleep with other people, but about trust’ he said. Queer Asia GagaOOLala’s Queer Asia series explores Hong Kong, Philippines, Japan and Vietnam. In the first four episodes, Cheuk Wan-chi met a number ...

Read More »

Manchester Pride adopts new rainbow flag with black and brown stripes

Manchester Pride is adopting a new rainbow flag for their celebrations and events this year. The new rainbow flag includes a black and brown stripe in acknowledgement of LGBTI people of color within the community. The eight-stripe flag will be their official banner for all 2019 events. First adopted by the city of Philadelphia in 2017, the flag is a variation of Gilbert Baker’s original rainbow flag. As the original adopters in Philadelphia explained, the expanded flag ‘to highlight black and brown LGBTQIA members within the city’s community’. Manchester Pride organizers released a statement about their adoption of the new flag: ‘For many years, the LGBT+ community has collectively stood under the iconic six-stripe rainbow flag. But in the 40 years since its creation, the community has evolved into many facets, with each one creating and identifying with their own symbols and flags.’ Mark Fletcher, chief executive of Manchester Pride, added the flag must be a symbol that adapts to ‘reflect the modern society that we live in’. He continued: ‘A lot has happened but there is still a long way to go, especially in the recognition of people of colour in the LGBT+ community.’ The event also released a new video about 2019 Pride: ‘Mine is the Pride, of a burning passion, a yearning inclusion of all,’ a voice says over the video. ‘We celebrate as one, campaigning, remembering, this battle’s not yet been won.’ The new eight-stripped flag can also be seen in the video, It’s not the only ...

Read More »

US Congressman to donate funds from scandal-hit Ed Buck to charity

US Congressman Ted Lieu will donate campaign funds from scandal-hit Democratic donor Ed Buck to charity. Los Angeles police are investigating the death of a man found in Buck’s West Hollywood home on Monday (7 January). Police have not revealed the identity and cause of death. Buck’s attorney told local press the victim died of an ‘accidental overdose’. It was, however, the second death of an African American man in Buck’s home in less than two years. Police found the first, a gay male escort, dead in July 2017 due to a drug overdose. Insufficient evidence meant police were unable to file charges. Lieu’s campaign announced Tuesday, they will donate US$18,500 of campaign funds from Buck to various LGBTI groups and the NAACP. Lieu will donate US$5,000 each to Lambda Legal and the NAACP. What’s more, he will give US$3,000 each to GLAAD and The Trevor Project, and $2,500 to the Equality California Institute. ‘I am deeply disturbed by the latest revelations of a second death by overdose at the home of Ed Buck,’ Lieu said according to the Wehoville. Federal election records also show Buck has donated more than $53,000 to Democratic candidates and campaigns since 2008. The US’s first openly bisexual senator Krysten Sinema previously donated Buck campaign funds to charity. Twitter users and local media on Wednesday called on other politicians — including Adam Schiff and Hilary Clinton — to return donations. Protestors also gathered outside Buck’s Hollywood apartment complex on Monday. The first victim Authorities found Gemmel ...

Read More »

Men charged with hate crimes for using Grindr to beat and rob victims

On Tuesday (8 January), a federal grand jury in Texas returned an indictment against two men accused of using Grindr to assault and rob gay male victims. They charged the men with conspiracy to commit hate crimes. The jury delivered a 15-count indictment against Daniel Jenkins, 19, and Michael Atkinson, 24. According to the Texas state attorney’s office, Jenkins and Atkinson used the popular dating app to ‘lure’ men to an apartment complex. They allegedly targeted at least nine men between the ages of 19 and 57. U.S. Attorney Erin Nealy Cox of the Northern District of Texas also revealed that at least ‘five victims were physicaly assaulted, one was sexually assaulted with an object, and one was smeared with feces’. Other reports state Jenkins and Atkinson allegedly wielded guns and threatened their victims with them. The pair face numerous other charges beyond the conspiracy one. Other charges could include kidnapping and carjacking, with a possible maximum sentence of life in prison. Similar to another case Last May, four men in Texas pled guilty to similar crimes. They all received between 10 and 20 years in federal prison. These men posed as gay men on Grindr and then made plans to meet their victims in person. Once they met the gay men from the app, they assaulted them, tied them up, and robbed them. At the time, attorney Joseph D. Brown for the Eastern District of Texas said the case ‘highlights the danger of the internet’ and specifically online apps. More ...

Read More »

Denver becomes latest US city to ban conversion therapy for minors

The US city of Denver just outlawed conversion therapy for minors. The Denver City Council on Monday (7 January) unanimously voted to ban the practice. Importantly, the city of 700,000 people joined 14 states and nearly 50 other cities and local administrations in the US in outlawing conversion therapy. But, it was the first place in the state of Colorado to do so. Statewide, there is no legal restrictions. ‘This is a very proud moment for my administration, for members of City Council, and for everyone in Denver who values inclusion and acceptance’, Denver Mayor Michael Hancock said in a statement. ‘Tonight’s vote to ban conversion therapy is our city coming together and saying with one voice that we will never allow our LGBTQ+ youth to be the targets of these dubious practices, and that we are here to support them’ he also said. In fact, the vote came just days before Colorado swore in the United States’ first ever openly gay governor. #Denver City Council just banned conversion therapy for minors. The vote was 13-0. #ConversionTherapy #BornPerfect — Denver City Council (@DenCityCouncil) January 8, 2019 Conversion therapy Conversion therapy is the harmful practice of attempting to change an LGBTI individuals sexual orientation or gender identity. What’s more, mainstream health and psychological organizations denounce the practice for treating LGBTI identities as a mental illness. Denver’s ban was first recommended by the city’s LGBTQ commission. Then, the office of human rights and community partnerships submitted the bill. This week, Thirteen council ...

Read More »

Glamorous Pose star Billy Porter shares song telling us to ‘love the pain away’

After making our jaw drops on the Golden Globes red carpet, Pose actor Billy Porter isn’t done. Working with Michael Korte, Porter stars in a new music video of his song Love the Pain Away. The video appears as part of Korte’s One Take project. This project features artists performing their songs and music in a single take. Korte, who’s best known for his Hamilton and Beyoncé mashup, is a YouTube sensation, and intoxicating performer. One of his most recent performances was dancing to a queer song in a church. This video, showing Porter recording the song in a studio with backup singers, is gorgeous and heartfelt. As Porter explains at the start of the video, he first wrote the song after the Columbine mass shooting. ‘I came across it a couple months ago,’ he says. ‘I realized that the sentiment is still necessary today.’ The idea of loving the pain away is one that’s undoubtedly still relevant today. Between the political upheavals across the globe and a continued trend of discrimination, a message of love is a powerful one. It is also poignant given the prevalence of mass shootings in the United States still today. Porter appears on Ryan Murphy’s FX series Pose about the ballroom scene in 1980s New York City. The series made history when it cast the most number of transgender actors in series regular roles ever. More from Gay Star News American Horror Story’s Billy Porter: I was groomed and raped by my stepdad Pose to ...

Read More »

In a first, giant billboards promote LGBTI acceptance in India

In a first for India, advocacy groups erected giant billboards promoting LGBTI acceptance in the capital, Delhi, last month. Local rights group Jhatkaa and equality campaigners All Out organized the advertisements above a metro station in in Delhi’s Connaught Place. Illustrations by LGBTI artist Salaka Pai shows a mother proudly watching her son and his boyfriend cook. ‘My family respects me irrespective of who I love’ the billboard says. ‘The main objective of this campaign is to push the conversation about LGBT rights towards social acceptance and the normalisation of queerness’ Jyotsna Sara George, campaign manager at Jhatkaa.org, told News Laundry. It happened! #India’s first #LGBT+ billboard in history is now up in the #NewDelhi‘s busiest spot! For the whole month, thousands of passersby will engage with messages of love and acceptance of LGBT+ people. pic.twitter.com/xSjd5kqC84 — All Out (@AllOut) January 7, 2019 But, some worry censorship by the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation’s (DMRC) has blurred the board’s intended message. Jhatkaa had originally commissioned an illustration of a lesbian couple sitting on a bench in front of the Delhi High Court. Text below the image said ‘being gay is not a crime’. It was a very obvious celebration of The Supreme Court’s decision to decriminalize gay sex in September last year. But, DMRC did not approve of the image. Jhatkaa therefore substituted the current advertisement instead. One local resident told News Laundry they thought the billboard depicted a mother and her two sons. George at Jhatkaa said the Delhi billboard ...

Read More »