GayLawNews™

November 2017

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30 November 2017

'Conversion therapy' banned by City Council; bill goes to de Blasio

UNITED STATES, New York: On 30 October 2017, the New York City Council voted 43-2 with 1 abstention, making the so-called conversion therapy unlawful. Under the legislation, which awaits the mayor’s signature or veto, offering or providing the therapy would be punishable by civil fines up to $1,000 for the first violation, $5,000 for the second violation, and $10,000 for each violation afterward.
Court annuls same-sex marriage

GREECE: On 30 November 2017, the Greek Supreme Court judges reportedly annulled a same-sex marriage conducted in 2008 by the mayor of the tiny Aegean island of Tilos. An appeal to the European Court of Human Rights is expected.
American man's fatal fall from Australian cliff ruled hate crime 30 years later

AUSTRALIA, New South Wales: On 30 November 2017, Magistrate Michael Barnes in the New South Wales Coroner's Court found that Scott Russell Johnson died on 08 December 1988 from the combined effect of multiple injuries sustained in a fall from height at the base of a cliff near Blue Fish Point on the northern side of North Head, New South Wales as a result of actual or threatened violence by unidentified persons who attacked him because they perceived him to be homosexual.
• Decision: Inquest into the death of Scott Russell Johnson 2011/389543 PDF 949.27kb 30 NOV 17
Historic Family Court win for young transgender people

AUSTRALIA, New South Wales: On 30 November 2017 in an important decision, Justices Thackeray, Strickland and Murphy in the Family Court of Australia ruled that young people who experience gender dysphoria and wish to undergo hormone treatment may now be able to do so without the approval of the Family Court.
• Reasons for Judgment: Re: Kelvin [2017] FamCAFC 258 PDF 765.61 30 NOV 17

29 November 2017

Australian Senate passes marriage equality bill

AUSTRALIA, Federal: On 29 November 2017, the Senate (upper house) passed 43-12 the Third Reading of the Marriage Amendment (Definition and Religious Freedoms) Bill 2017 and the Bill now moves to the House of Representatives.

28 November 2017

Judge: Arkansas birth-certificate system will be shut down if not fixed by Jan. 5

UNITED STATES, Arkansas: On 27 November 2017, Pulaski County Circuit Judge Tim Fox ruled the Arkansas Department of Health must issue birth certificates to same sex parents on 05 January 2018 if the parties do not meet and confer to find agreed strikeouts to the present statutory language that will allow the defendant to constitutionally issue birth certificates to all residents and citizens.
• Memorandum Opinion: Pavan, Jacobs and Kassel and Scott v. Nathaniel Smith 60CV-15-3153 PDF 116.54kb 27 NOV 17

27 November 2017

Egypt jails 14 men for homosexuality

EGYPT: On 27 November 2017, it was reported that Egypt had sentenced 14 more men for homosexuality to jail for three years for ''abnormal'' sexual relations. The men were released on bail of 5,000 Egyptian pounds ($283, €230) each until an appeals trial. Following a rainbow flag being held at a concert in Cairo, police announced a crackdown on the LGBTI community. More than 70 people have been arrested, with more than 20 receiving jail sentences ranging from six months to six years.

25 November 2017

Istanbul district bans gay film festival

TURKEY: On 24 November 2017, the Beyoglu district governor's office reportedly banned a one-day festival that had been set to showcase short films on gay issues on Saturday, claiming the event would not be allowed to take place, in a bid to ''protect public order and safety, others' rights and freedoms, and to prevent crime''.
Circuit court: Same-sex marriage cannot be considered valid in Estonia

ESTONIA: On 23 November 2017, the Tallinn Circuit Court reportedly overturned the ruling of Tallinn Administrative Court according to which the Police and Border Guard Board (PPA) was obligated to grant a residence permit Sarah Raud, a US citizen married (in the US) to Estonian Kristina Raud, stating that a marriage between two people of the same sex is not valid in Estonia. The Court also would not allow them to register their cohabitation in Estonia.

24 November 2017

Appeals Court upholds ruling against Hamilton dad fighting schools' homosexuality teachings

CANADA, Ontario: On 22 November 2017, Sharpe J. A. in the Ontario Court of Appeal dismissed the appeal of E.T. who sought to be notified by the Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board of any classroom instruction or discussion of various issues such as ''moral relativism'', ''environmental worship'', ''instruction in sex education'', and ''discussion or portrayals of homosexual/bisexual conduct and relationships and/or transgenderism as natural, healthy or acceptable'' so that he could decide whether or not to withdraw his children from those classes or activities.
• Judgment: E.T. v. Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board 2017 ONCA 893 PDF 438.00kb 22 NOV 17

23 November 2017

Gay couple to remain childless

SOUTH AFRICA: On 17 November 2017, High Court Judge Ronel Tolmay refused to confirm the surrogacy motherhood agreement entered into by same-sex couple CJD and HN, because they did not live together and one of the men did not want his sexual orientation to become public, finding that it would not be in the best interests of the child to be born from the surrogacy agreement.
• Judgment: CJD, HN, GLJ and ROM v. Centre for Child Care No: 53101/2017 PDF 3.06MB 17 NOV 17

22 November 2017

Second U.S. judge halts Trump ban on transgender troops

UNITED STATES, Federal: On 21 November 2017, US District Judge Marvin Garbis in Baltimore ruled that the banning of transgender people from serving in the US military lacked justification and ''cannot possibly constitute a legitimate governmental interest''.
• Memorandum and Order: Brock Stone, et al. v. Donald J. Trump, et al. No. MJG-17-2459 PDF 157.62kb 21 NOV 17

21 November 2017

This Transgender Professor Just Won A $1 Million Jury Verdict In A Major Case Against A University

UNITED STATES, Oklahoma: On 20 November 2017, a US District Court jury found that Dr Rachel Tudor, former professor at Southeastern Oklahoma State University, had been discriminated against by being denied tenure because of her gender and a chance to re-apply due to her past complaints about workplace discrimination. The jury was awarded Tudor $1,165,000 in damages.
• Verdict Form: Dr Rachel Tudor v. Southeastern Oklahoma State University and Anor No. 5:15-cv-00324-C PDF 229.35kb 20 NOV 17
De Pere passes transgender nondiscrimination ordinance

UNITED STATES, Wisconsin: On 21 November 2017, the De Pere City Council reportedly narrowly (5-4) approved a ban on discrimination against transgender and gender non-binary individuals. Effective March 2018, the ordinance prohibits employers, businesses and landlords from discriminating against people based on gender identity and expression, which are not federally protected classes.

19 November 2017

Turkey bans all LGBT events in capital to 'protect public security'

TURKEY: On 19 November 2017, it was reported that the Ankara governor's office had banned all events by lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans and intersex rights groups in its capital city to protect ''public security'' for an ''indefinite'' period with effect from 18 November.

18 November 2017

State Supreme Court rules on domestic violence law

UNITED STATES, South Carolina: On 17 November 2017, the South Carolina Supreme Court ruled that two sections of the State's domestic violence law are unconstitutional as applied to Jane Doe because neither affords protection from domestic abuse for unmarried, same-sex individuals who are cohabiting or formerly have cohabited by exclusion from the definition of ''household member''.
• Order and Declaratory Judgment: Jane Doe v. State of South Carolina No. 2015-001726 PDF 239.82kb 17 NOV 17

17 November 2017

Surrogate mother who changed her mind must hand baby to gay couple, court rules

UNITED KINGDOM, England & Wales: On 17 November 2017, the Court of Appeals ruled in favor of a male gay couple and granted them custody of the child H, born to a surrogate mother. The Court of Appeal ruled that the original decision to give custody to the gay couple and limiting contact with the surrogate mother and father to six times a year was correct.
• Judgment: Re: H (A Child), Re H (Surrogacy Breakdown) [2017] EWCA Civ 1798 HTML 17 NOV 17

15 November 2017

Gay man found guilty of deliberately infecting dates with HIV

UNITED KINGDOM, England & Wales: On 15 November 2017, a Lewes Crown Court jury found Daryll Rowe guilty of deliberately infecting his Grindr dates with HIV. The jury found Rowe guilty of five counts of grievous bodily harm (GBH) and five counts of attempted GBH. He infected at least five people after attempting to infect at least 10.
Australian Marriage Law Postal Survey

AUSTRALIA, Federal: On 15 November 2017, the Australian Bureau of Statistics announced that the Australian Marriage Law Postal Survey was mailed out to 16,006,180 eligible Australians. 12,727,920 (79.5%) submitted a response. 7,817,247 (61.6%) answered ''YES'' to the question ''Should the law be change to allow same-sex couples to marry?''. 4,873,987 (38.4%) answered ''No''. The Parliament must now pass legislation amending the Marriage Act 1961.

09 November 2017

Imam in Denmark Gets Suspended Sentence for Anti-Gay Remarks

DENMARK: On 09 November 2017, the city court in Viborg reportedly imposed a two-week suspended jail sentence on Imam Mohamad Jammal for violating the penal code by making public remarks in newspaper interviews against homosexuals, whom he compared to pedophiles.

08 November 2017

Court dismisses Anwar’s lawsuit against govt

MALAYSIA: On 08 November 2017, Justice Datin Azizah Nawawi in the High Court allowed the government's application to strike out former Opposition leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim's originating summons and ruled that the plaintiff's case relating to his conviction for sodomising his former aide Mohd Saiful Bukhari Azlan was groundless and without any supporting evidence.
Civil Status Law Must Allow a Third Gender Option

GERMANY: On 10 October 2017, the Federal Constitutional Court ruled that the provisions of civil status law are incompatible with the Basic Law's requirements to the extent that § 22(3) of the Civil Status Act (Personenstandsgesetz - PStG) does not provide for a third option - besides the entry ''female'' or ''male'', allowing for a positive gender entry. The Court called on the legislature to correct these violations.
• Order (in German): Constitutional complaint against the refusal to register the sex of intersex persons with the designation "inter" or "divers" in the birth register ("third sex") 1 BvR 2019/16 HTML 10 OCT 17

07 November 2017

Australia Same Sex Marriage Survey Draws 78.5 Percent Response Rate

AUSTRALIA, Federal: On 07 November 2017, the Australian Bureau of Statistics estimated it has received a total of 12.6 million (78.5 per cent) Australian Marriage Law Postal Surveys (does not include forms received or processed since Friday, 03 November 2017).

02 November 2017

Court: Governor can't protect LGBT rights by issuing order

UNITED STATES, Louisiana: On 01 November 2017, a three-judge panel of the First Circuit Court of Appeal unanimously upheld a lower court's December decision that the executive order of Democratic Governor John Bel Edwards order aimed at protecting the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people in state government was an unconstitutional attempt to expand state law.
• Opinion: The Louisiana Department of Justice and Jeff Landry v. John Bel Edwards No. 2017 CA 0173 PDF 488.21kb 01 NOV 17

01 November 2017

Judge's secretly recorded HIV insult could undo Palm Springs killers' convictions

UNITED STATES, California: On 01 November 2017, it was reported that convicted murderer Kaushal Niroula, who preyed upon rich Palm Springs retiree Clifford Lambert, could get a new trial because now retired judge David B. Downing may have been caught in a secret recording saying he ignored court motions submitted by the gay, HIV-positive defendant, saying he didn't read motions from Kaushal Niroula specifically because Niroula has HIV and his documents came in envelopes that were licked closed. The recordings were made on co-accused Daniel Garcia’s laptop that had been secretly recording the court proceedings for about seven weeks in 2012. The recordings were later confiscated by the court and have been sealed for five years.
Saskatchewan judge denies Forsberg's request for removal of gender marker from ID

CANADA, Saskatchewan: On 30 October 2017, Justice Jennifer Pritchard in the Court of Queen's Bench denied the request of Fran Forsberg on behalf of her transgender daughter Renn to remove gender markers from government identification, finding it was ''too broad in its scope for an interim order''. ''In reality, the requested orders are more akin to permanent injunctions''.
Transgender sailor files petition in Delhi HC after being discharged from Navy

INDIA: On 30 October 2017, Justice GS Sistani and Justice V Kameswar Rao in the Delhi High Court reportedly called for the Indian Navy to assign an alternative job to M2F transsexual sailor Manish Giri, who has now changed his name to Saba Giri. Giri disclosed having had gender reassignment surgery last month and the Navy contended that since the petitioner is now a woman, she cannot be reinstated in the job she once held as the position is not open to women. The case is listed for hearing 23 November 2017.
New York City Hall denied a gay couple a divorce even though they were married there

UNITED STATES, New York: On 31 October 2017, Supreme Court Justice Matthew Cooper reportedly ruled that the city should grant Andrzej Gruszczynski and Wiktor Jerzy Twarkowski a divorce, since it saw fit to marry them in the first place, calling it a matter of ''basic fairness and simple justice''.
• Decision and Order (Registration): Gruszczynski, Andrzej Francisek v. Twarkowski, Wiktor Jerzy No. 308268-2016 HTML 26 OCT 17

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