Saturday, 10 July 2010

MaltaToday: Gay pride march to reaffirm equal recognition stand
9.7.10 by Matthew Vella

Rights Now! will be a call to politicians and policy makers that the recognition of lesbian and gay rights cannot be postponed any longer, Gabi Calleja, the coordinator of the Malta Gay Rights Movement, said.

Calleja was announcing this year’s theme for Pride Week, which will be celebrated between the 12-17 July 2010. This year's activities feature an LGBT Film Festival, the WomenSpace event, the Pride March and an evening performance by Michael Ashanti.

“LGBT citizens demand equality in all spheres of life, especially where this relates to family life and in the case of transgender persons the right to self-determination and bodily integrity,” Calleja said.

She played down the use of “token references to the respect and valuing of diversity” that did nothing to bring about the necessary changes in the law, policy and work practices. “What is needed is equal recognition for same-sex couples and their families; access to gender reassignment and marriage to transgender persons; legal protection against discrimination experienced by the LGBT community in the provision of goods and services and the correct transposition of the Freedom of Movement Directive to enable LGBT people to live with their partner from a third country in Malta. It is such concrete actions that will make a difference to the quality of our lives and those of our families.”

The Pride March will take place on Saturday 17 July at 10:30am in Valletta and will feature MTV Network artist Michael Ashanti, as well as Liberal MEP Holger Krahmer, Labour MP Leo Brincat and Alternattiva Demokratika chairperson Michael Briguglio. The film festival runs on the 12, 13, and 15 July. WomenSpace is an event exclusively by women for women and will take place on Wednesday 14 July at the Gaia Foundation in Ghajn Tuffieha from 8pm onwards.

The closing event of the week is a performance by American R&B singer Michael Ashanti which will be held at Jazz Smooth Inc. bar in Paceville on Saturday 17 July at 10:30pm.

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