GayLawNews™

May 2018

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31 May 2018

Chile: Supreme Court approves gender registration without sex reassignment

CHILE: On 30 May 2018, the IV Chamber of the Supreme Court reportedly approved 4-1 a transgender person's request to change their name and registered gender ''without needing any surgical intervention'', as provided by international treaties in force that the country has ratified.

30 May 2018

Bill expunging criminal records of men convicted of homosexual acts passes the Senate

CANADA, Federal: On 30 May 2018, the Senate passed Bill C-66 which expunges the records of men who were criminally convicted when homosexual acts were a crime. The Bill does not expunge the records of people who were arrested and convicted of gross indecency during police bathhouse raids, most of which took place in the 1970s and 1980s.

29 May 2018

Dutch court rules third gender should be recognised

NETHERLANDS: On 29 May 2018, the Limburg District Court in the city of Roermond reportedly decided an unnamed applicant could be recorded on their birth register as ''gender undetermined''. Until now, Dutch citizens have had to be registered as either a man or woman.

25 May 2018

John Christopher Sunol's contempt of the Tribunal referred to Supreme Court [GayLawNet(R)(TM)]

AUSTRALIA, New South Wales: On 25 May 2018, The Hon F Marks in the Civil and Adminstrative Tribunal ruled that John Christopher Sunol was guilty of contempt of this Tribunal, such contempt being constituted by the publication by Sunol of material found to be capable of constituting contempt of the Tribunal and failure to comply with orders> The numerous proceedings were referred to the Supreme Court for determination of contempt. Sunol had posted anti-homosexual material in his website blog, complained of by Gary Burns, and had made ''baseless attacks on the integrity or impartiality of'' the members of the Tribunal.
• Decision: Burns v. Sunol PDF 2.23MB 25 MAY 18
Saskatchewan Court allows removal of gender from birth certificates

CANADA, Saskatchewan: On 24 May 2018, the Court of Queen's Bench reportedly ordered the provincial government to allow for the removal of gender markers on birth certificates, finding that sections 31 and 65 of The Vital Statistics Act did, in fact, breach The Saskatchewan Human Rights Code.
Court Rules Boyertown School District Can Let Transgender Students Use Bathroom Of Choice

UNITED STATES, Pennsylvania: On 24 May 2018, the Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit ruled that the Boyertown School District can allow transgender students to continue using bathrooms and locker rooms that correspond with their sexual identity.
• Judgment: Joel Doe v. Boyertown Area School District No. 17-3313 PDF 79.29kb 24 MAY 18

24 May 2018

Victorian laws changed to stop the forced divorce of transgender people

AUSTRALIA, Victoria: On 22 May 2018, the upper House Legislative Council passed the Justice Legislation Amendment (Access to Justice) Bill 2018 - Part 3 of which amends the Births, Deaths and Marriages Registration Act 1966 - that will mean married trans and gender-diverse people will no longer have to file for divorce after their gender is changed on their birth certificate. The Bill was assented to on 29 May 2018.

23 May 2018

Federal court rules in favour of transgender Missouri inmate

UNITED STATES, Missouri: On 22 May 2018, US District Magistrate Judge Noelle C Collins in St. Louis ruled that the Missouri prison system must provide hormone therapy for Potosi Correctional Center transgender inmate Jessica Hicklin, currently serving a first-degree murder sentence.
• Memorandum and Order and Permanent Injunction: Jessica Hicklin v. Anny Precynthe et al. No. 4:16-CV-01357-NCC PDF 192.35kb 22 MAY 18

22 May 2018

Federal judge rules in favor of transgender teen in bathroom case

UNITED STATES, Virginia: On 22 May 2018, the US District Court of the Eastern District of Virginia ruled that Title IX and the Constitution protects transgender students from being blocked from using the restroom that matches their gender identity, finding in favor of transgender teenager Gavin Grimm in his fight against Gloucester County School Board to use the men's restroom and dismissing a motion to dismiss filed by the School. The Supreme Court said it would not hear the case in March of 2017, and the case was pushed back to the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals, which sent the case back to the district court in July of 2017.
• Order: Gavin Grimm v. Gloucester County School 4:15cv54 PDF 1.98MB 22 MAY 18
Appeals court upholds denial of benefits for unmarried state worker's partner

UNITED STATES, Arizona: On 22 May 2018, the Court of Appeals rejected claims by Renee Loncar, who worked for the state, that she should be entitled to death benefits following the death of her live-in partner Christopher Kutcher, ruling heterosexual couples who have always had the right to marry in Arizona are not entitled to the same benefits that the state provided to gay couples who were not at the time entitled to wed.
• Opinion: Renee Loncar v. Doug Ducey No. 1 CA-CV 17-0394 PDF 373.49kb 22 MAY 18

21 May 2018

Michigan board: Civil rights law bars LGBT discrimination

UNITED STATES, Michigan: On 21 May 2018, the Civil Rights Commission reportedly voted 5-0 (1 abstention, 2 absent) to issue an interpretive statement saying that discriminating on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity is a form of sex discrimination outlawed under the 1976 civil rights law. Complaints will be processed starting Tuesday.

18 May 2018

Cape Town pastor found guilty of contempt of court for anti-gay slurs

SOUTH AFRICA: On 18 May 2018, Judge Lee Bozalek, in the Equality Court in Cape Town was reported to have sentenced Reverend Oscar Bougardt to 30 days in prison, suspended for five years, for contempt of court after he disregarded a court order barring him from making anti-gay comments.

17 May 2018

In historic move, Hong Kong has started giving visas to same-sex couples

HONG KONG: On 17 May 2018, it was reported that the Immigration Department has started issuing 'out of policy' visas to same-sex couples, making them equal to heterosexual couples following the September 2017 decision of the Court of Appeal that is subject to a Court of Final Appeal hearing on 04 June. The visas allow partnerís to have resident status, have a Hong Kong national ID card, take up employment or education.

16 May 2018

Gay 'Conversion Therapy' Is Now Illegal In Maryland

UNITED STATES, Maryland: On 15 May 2018, Governor Larry Hogan signed SB1028 (CH0685), The Youth Mental Health Protection Act into law with effect from 01 October 2018. The legislation makes it unlawful to perform so-called gay reparative or ''conversion therapy'' on minors.

15 May 2018

ACK fined Sh200,000 for contempt in gay case

KENYA: On 15 May 2018, Justice Nzioki Makau in the Nyeri Law Courts reportedly fined the Anglican Church of Kenya Sh200,000 for disobeying orders to reinstate three priests who were suspended over allegations of engaging in homosexuality and directed the Registered Trustees of the ACK church to pay the fine within 48 hours for contempt of court.

14 May 2018

Governor Malloy Signs Legislation Codifying Practices Into Law To Ensure The Fair Treatment Of Women In Prison

UNITED STATES, Connecticut: On 14 May 2018, Governor Malloy announced that he had signed Public Act 18-4 - An Act Concerning the Fair Treatment of Incarcerated Persons, that amongst several requirements, establishes standards of treatment and placement for inmates who have a gender identity that differs from their assigned sex at birth with effect from 01 July (Section 8).
Costa Rica Rules Transgender People Can Change Name, Gender, On Official Documents

COSTA RICA: On 14 May 2018, the supreme electoral court approved a resolution that will allow people to change the name they are registered with to go with their gender identity. Its decision also means that the gender a person is registered with at birth will no longer appear on identity documents.
Kern judge issues final judgment in Tastries case

UNITED STATES, California: On 01 May 2018, Superior Court Judge David R Lampe signed final judgment in favor of Tastries owner Cathy Miller, a baker who refused to make a wedding cake for a same-sex couple. In February 2018, the Judge ruled that ''The right to freedom of speech under the First Amendment outweighs the State's interest in ensuring freely accessible marketplace.
• Judgment: Department of Fair EMployment and Housing v. Cathy's Creations Inc and Anor PDF 589.95kb 01 MAY 18
'Same-sex marriages abroad not valid'

ITALY: On 14 May 2018, in its first such ruling, the Cassation Court reportedly determined that a same-sex marriage between an Italian and a foreigner celebrated abroad can't be registered in Italy but can be ''converted'' into a civil union.

13 May 2018

Vermont passes gender-neutral bathroom bill

UNITED STATES, Vermont: On 11 May 2018, Governor Phil Scott signed Bill H333 into law after the legislature finally unanimously passed in the Senate.The Bill will require all single-user bathrooms in public buildings or places of public accommodation to be marked as gender-neutral. The bill passed with a large majority in the House in April 2017. The law will go into effect on 01 July. It does not apply to bathrooms with more than one toilet.
US rolls back protections for transgender prison inmates

UNITED STATES, Federal: On 11 May 2018, the US Bureau of Prisons reportedly announced an inmate's biological sex will now be used to make the initial decision as to where transgender prisoners are housed, instead of the gender to which they identify, introduced under former President Barack Obama.

11 May 2018

Governor signs bill allowing taxpayer funded anti-gay discrimination says it enables diversity

UNITED STATES, Oklahoma: On 11 May 2018, Governor Mary Fallin signed anti-gay Bill SB1140 into law, allowing taxpayer funded adoption agencies to cite their "religious or moral convictions" to refuse to allow LGBT people to adopt.

10 May 2018

Portugal: presidential veto on transgender law to change sex

PORTUGAL: On 10 May 2018, President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa was reported to have vetoed a law approved by parliament to facilitate sex reassignment surgery for everyone over 16 without a medical report. The President sent back the law asking for a ''reasonable'' revision requiring a mandatory medical opinion for minors aged 16 to 18.
Getting PAN made easy for transgenders

INDIA: On 09 May 2018, the Central Board of Direct Taxes reportedly issued an advisory on the 10 April change to the income tax rules providing for three check boxes on a Permanent Account Number (PAN) application form - for male, female and transgender. There is no requirement of depositing any supporting document.

09 May 2018

Article Allowing Same Sex Couples to Become Foster Parents Passes in Parliament

GREECE: On 09 May 2018, the Hellenic Parliament reportedly voted 161-103 to pass Article 8 of the draft law on adoption and fostering that gives the opportunity to couples of the same sex living under a civil partnership to become foster partners. However, the legislation clearly states they cannot adopt children.

08 May 2018

Transgender rights bill approved in NA, marking second milestone

PAKISTAN: On 08 May 2018, the National Assembly reportedly approved the ''Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Act, 2018'' for the protection of transgender persons' rights ≠ the final stage before it is signed into a law.

07 May 2018

New Jersey Becomes Tenth State to Enact Paid Sick Leave

UNITED STATES, New Jersey: On 02 May 2018, Governor Phil Murphy signed the New Jersey Paid Sick Leave Act into law. The law goes into effect on 29 October mandating paid sick leave for full and part-time workers. Earned sick leave may be used for the employee's own health condition and time off for preventative medical care, and to take care of or coordinate preventative medical care for family members. The term ''family member'' is defined broadly to include (amongst aothers) the employee's child, sibling, spouse, domestic or civil union partner, sibling of the employee's spouse, domestic or civil union partner, and ''any other individual related by blood to the employee or whose close association with the employee is equivalent of a family relationship''.

04 May 2018

Discrimination in Kansas: Legislature Sends Anti-LGBTQ Child Welfare Bill to Governor's Desk

UNITED STATES, Kansas: On 04 May 2018, a patently discriminatory bill, SB 284 (known until now as HB 2481), which would create a license to discriminate with taxpayer funds against LGBTQ foster or adoptive parents, single parents, or other qualified families. The bill passed out of a conference committee on 04 May 2018, was approved by both chambers (Senate 24-15, House 63-58) and is now headed to the Governor Jeff Colyer's desk.
Court of Appeal Tosses Verdict Because of Prosecutor's Bias Against Gay Jurors

UNITED STATES, California: On 03 May 2018, the Third District Court of Appeal tossed 2-1 a criminal judgment against Brady Dee Douglas for attempted second degree robbery, assault and shooting, in a case where the prosecutor exercised peremptory strikes against two openly gay prospective jurors claiming that they'd be biased against a witness - a closeted gay man.
• Opinion: The People v. Brady Dee Douglas No. C072881 PDF 248.12kb 03 MAY 18
Transgender anti-discrimination bill set to become law in New Hampshire

UNITED STATES, New Hampshire: On 02 May 2018, the Senate voted 14-10 to pass Bill HB1319 expanding anti-discrimination law to protect transgender residents. Governor Chris Sununu is expected to sign the Bill into law.

03 May 2018

In Israel, Lesbian Ex Wins Joint Custody of Son Born After Split With Mom

ISRAEL: On 02 May 2018, the Supreme Court reportedly ruled that lesbian birth mother ''Adi'' must let her former partner ''Hagit'' forge a relationship with her son ''Gal'', even though he was born after the partners had separated. This is a precedent-setting ruling because it recognizes family relationships that are not blood relationships in families headed by LGBTpersons, even after they break up.

01 May 2018

After lesbian couple splits, court rules nonbiological parent has right to child ex-wife carried

UNITED STATES, Illinois: On 27 April 2018, the Illinois Appellate Court, Second District ruled that Ashlie Judd, whose former wife Dee Baron-Judd had a baby AMJ through artificial insemination, has parental rights to the child even though they're not biologically related, affirming the judgment of the circuit court of Winnebago County declaring a parent-child relationship between Ashlie and AMJ.
Opinion: In the Marriage of Dee J v. Ashlie J No. 2-17-0532 PDF 41.54kb 27 APR 18
Russia bans another gay website, one dedicated to HIV education

RUSSIA: On 26 January 2018, the Burlinsky District Court in the outlying Altai Territory, which borders Mongolia and Kazakhstan reportedly ruled that the Parni PLUS (Guys Plus) website ''contains information challenges family values that promote unconventional sexual relations''. The web site received a notice on 28 April 2018 from the Federal Service for Supervision of Communications, Information Technology and Mass Media known as Roskomnadzor giving it 24 hours to remove the prohibited content from the website or restrict access to it and leaving no time to appeal the decision.
Hong Kongís top court denies 31 major banks and law firms' bid to support lesbian expat 'QT' in LGBT rights battle

HONG KONG: On 01 May 2018, the Court of Final Appeal reportedly struck down a bid from more than 30 major banks and law firms, as well as Amnesty International, to support lesbian QT's legal battle that has far-reaching implications on gay expatriate couples in the city. QT was denied a dependant visa despite she and her partner SS having entered a civil union in Britain. The Court decided arguments made by institutions were already covered by the woman who was denied a spousal visa through her wife after moving to the city in 2014.

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