09 Jan 2020 - NPWJ News Digest on on LGBTI rights


Walking in Two Worlds: Canada's 'Two-spirit' Doctor Guiding Trans Teenagers
By Haaretz, 08 Jan 2020

Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, Jan 8 (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Sitting on the floor of a teepee, in a circle of patients, friends and relatives, doctor James Makokis cried as he remembered his father struggling to accept him when he came out as gay at the age of 17. Speaking to about two dozen people, including transgender teenagers and their parents, Makokis explained how his uncles helped his father come to terms with his sexuality. "It was kind of difficult for him to, to understand that," his voice breaking as his husband Anthony Johnson comforted him in the soaring canvas structure in the garden of their home near Edmonton, capital city of Canada's Alberta province.

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Polish left-wing parties appoint gay candidate Robert Biedron for Presidential elections
By Gcn, 08 Jan 2020

 Three parties will combat rising homophobia in the country with their nomination of the openly gay MEP as a candidate. Robert Biedron, the openly gay leader of left-wing political party Spring, has been chosen by three centre-left parties as a candidate for Poland’s presidential elections, due to take place in May. The nomination is a huge gesture for a country where it has been reported that homophobia is on the rise, including dozens of local governments declaring themselves LGBT-free zones. Same-sex unions are still not legal, while gay couples cannot take out loans together or inherit. The current governing party PiS (Law and Justice) is also well known for its anti-LGBT+ stance.

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Conservative, liberal Methodists to split over gay marriage
By Reuters, 03 Jan 2020

The United Methodist Church plans to split into two later this year, church officials said on Friday, a schism that follows years of contention over whether the church should end its ban on same-sex marriage and gay clergy. The plan, if approved at the church’s worldwide conference in Minneapolis in May, would divide the third-largest U.S. Christian denomination into two branches: A traditionalist side opposed to gay marriage and the ordination of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender clergy, and a progressive wing that will allow same-sex marriage and LGBT clergy. The split would affect the denomination globally, church leaders said. The United Methodist Church lists more than 13 million members in the United States and 80 million worldwide.

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India's LGBTQ community joins citizenship law protests
By AlJazeera, 03 Jan 2020

Members of LGBTQ community and others march in New Delhi as protests against 'anti-Muslim' law continue across India. More than 1,000 members of India's LGBTQ community and other rights groups have marched in the capital, New Delhi, to protest against the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), which critics say violates the country's secular constitution and is anti-Muslim. The protesters on Friday marched from a square in central New Delhi to Jantar Mantar, a popular site close to the Indian Parliament that witnesses dozens of protests on various issues every week.

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The region which legislates who you can love
By BBC News, 01 Jan 2020

Senator Aziza Lake says homophobia is “ingrained” in much of the Caribbean. “It's mainly snide remarks due to toxic masculinity,” Aziza Lake says. But homophobia in Antigua and Barbuda sometimes manifests itself in sporadic brutality too, she continues. In her rainbow-coloured shirt and hat, seated outside a popular café in the capital, St John's, she might consider herself lucky compared to her openly gay counterparts in neighbouring Caribbean nations. LGBT people in the Eastern Caribbean described being stabbed, beaten, choked and pelted with bottles and bricks in a 2018 Human Rights Watch Report. Now the region which Time magazine dubbes in 2006 as "the most homophobic place on Earth" is the scene of a major battle to overturn British colonial-era laws that ban same-sex intimacy.

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