Thursday, 25 February 2016

Times: Italy's Senate approves civil unions, but without adoptions
Thursday, February 25, 2016, 21:11

Italy's Senate has voted to grant legal recognition to civil unions, as the last holdout in Western Europe took a compromise step to give some rights to gay couples after a years-long battle.

Premier Matteo Renzi described the passage of the bill as "historic".

But gay and lesbian groups denounced the legislation as a betrayal because Mr Renzi's Democratic Party sacrificed a provision to allow gay adoption in order to ensure passage.

The legislation, which must still pass the lower Chamber of Deputies, is nevertheless significant for an overwhelmingly Roman Catholic country where the Vatican holds sway in politics and society, although Pope Francis remained silent as debate raged in recent months.

It passed 173-71, well over the threshold necessary.

Times: 'We never said homosexuality is a disease or disorder' - Church

Curia insists its position paper on gay conversion therapies being misquoted
Monday, February 22, 2016, 18:38

There is nothing in the Church's position paper on gay conversion therapies that can be remotely construed as implying that homosexuality is a disease or disorder, the Curia said this evening.

"It is unfortunate that the reactions to the Church’s position paper written by a group of experts have attributed statements to them which neither express their sentiments nor correspond to what they have written," the Curia said, in reaction to a barrage of criticism.

Times: Update 2 - PM, PN react as Archbishop clarifies position on gay conversion therapy
Monday, February 22, 2016, 06:39

Updated with Prime Minister's/ PN comments - Archbishop Charles Scicluna has moved to quell a growing controversy over a church committee's report on gay conversion therapy, saying that such therapy was a “no go” when it went against people's wishes, but also urging critics of the report to read it properly.

Sunday, 21 February 2016

Malta Today: Church’s position paper on conversion therapy 'profoundly flawed' in practical, legal interpretations

The Malta Gay Rights Movement says bill seeks to ensure that all persons – irrespective of their sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression – are valued equally
20 February 2016, 12:53pm by Miriam Dalli 

MGRM coordinator Gabi Calleja (Photo: Ray Attard)

A position paper issued by the Catholic Church on government’s plan to criminalise conversion therapies is “profoundly flawed both in its understanding of the practical implications the Act will have on professional practice as well as in its legal interpretations”.

Malta Gay Rights Movement coordinator Gabi Calleja said that, since all persons have a sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression, no discrimination applied.

Saturday, 20 February 2016

Times: Gay conversion Bill raises 'serious ethical, legal issues' - Church
Saturday, February 20, 2016, 10:52

The Conversion Therapy Bill being presented to Parliament violates the constitutional provisions on discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, a Church position paper has concluded.

The legislation being proposed on the affirmation of sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression raises a number of "serious ethical and legal issues", according to a position paper published by the Curia on the advice of seven experts in the field.

"Rather than fostering a ‘culture of dignity’ in which every citizen, irrespective of sexual orientation or gender identity or expression, lives in an inclusive culture of recognition between human beings, the proposed Bill promotes discrimination, disrespect for personal autonomy and distrust in the accountability of professional bodies."

Thursday, 18 February 2016

Malta Today: 'Notable shift' in Maltese mentality in favour of LGBTI+ rights

Civil liberties minister Helena Dalli hails Eurobarometer survey that indicate that 77% of the Maltese are in favour of full rights to homosexual people, and that 70% in favour of full rights to trans-people
16 February 2016, 10:40am by Tim Diacono

The mentality of the Maltese public has in recent years shifted signficantly in favour of rights to LGBTI+ people, civil liberties minister Helena Dalli claimed.

Speaking in parliament during a debate on this year’s Budget, Dalli cited a recent Eurobarometer survey in which 81% of Maltese respondents said they were in favour of the rights of trans-people to update their ID cards to match their gender identities.

Wednesday, 17 February 2016

Times: Malta being promoted for gay travel
Tuesday, February 16, 2016, 18:52 by Philip Leone-Ganado

Recent changes in the law have ensured more equal rights for LGBT people. However, the shift towards greater cultural acceptance has also had an unexpected side effect – positioning Malta as a destination for gay travel.

The Malta Tourism Authority (MTA) has recently embarked on a campaign in the US and Canada promoting Malta as a “winter escape for the LGBT traveller”.

Malta’s progressive reputation is a selling point. Photo: Darrin Zammit Lupi

Monday, 15 February 2016

ECDC: HIV in Europe: 5 facts you need to know
European Centre for Disease Prevention & Control

HIV in Europe: 5 facts you need to know from ECDC on Vimeo.

Did you know that...
- more than 300 000 people were diagnosed with HIV over the last decade?
- that cases among men who have sex with men continue to rise?
- everyday, 80 people are diagnosed with HIV?
- half of these cases are diagnosed late?
- many more people are infected but unaware and can pass on the virus to others?
HIV: Test, protect, prevent.

Sunday, 14 February 2016

Reuters: Portugal parliament overturns veto on adoption by gay couples
(Reporting by Andrei Khalip; editing by Katharine Houreld)
Wed, Feb 10 17:00 PM GMT

LISBON (Reuters) - Portugal's parliament on Wednesday overturned the presidential veto on a bill legalising adoption by same-sex couples, which means conservative President Anibal Cavaco Silva will have to sign it into law before his term ends in March.