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September 2018

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30 September 2018

Switzerland has made homophobia and transphobia illegal, comparing them to racism

SWITZERLAND: On 30 September 2018, it was reported that National Council voted by 118-60 votes to update the penal code making people who are homophobic or transphobic toward someone else face the same punishment as if they were racist toward them, and people who break the law could face up to three years in jail.

28 September 2018

Uttarakhand HC Directs Reservation In Admissions, Govt. Jobs For Transgenders; Housing Scheme; Separate Public Toilets Etc

INDIA, Uttarakhand: On 28 September 2018, Acting Chief Justice Rajiv Sharma and Justice Manoj Kumar Tiwari in the Uttarakhand High Court, on the petitions of Rano, and Rajni Rawat Kinnar, directed the State to formulate a scheme within six months to provide reservation in admission in educational institutions and for public appointments to transgenders.
• Judgment: Rano & Ors v. State of Uttarakhand and Others No. 1794 of 2018 PDF 284.63kb 28 SEP 18
Allahabad High Court turns down police protection request from gay couple claiming threat from their parents

INDIA, Uttar Pradesh: On 27 September 2018, the Allahabad High Court reportedly dismissed a petition for police security cover by a gay couple citing a threat to their lives from their own parents who opposed their union. Justice Pankaj Mithal and Justice Mukhtar Ahmed refused the couple's request reportedly saying ''We cannot interfere in this matter since it is a 'social problem'.
Same-sex couples in Northern Ireland to get fertility treatment on NHS

UNITED KINGDOM, Northern Ireland: On 28 September 2018, the Department of Health reported announced that interventions such as IVF are now available to same-sex couples on the NHS. The Health and Social Board (HSCB) is finalising the updated eligibility criteria for all people seeking fertility treatment in the Regional Fertility Centre taking account of the National Institute of Health and Care Excellence (NICE) clinical guidance 156. When these amended eligibility criteria are finalised they will be made available.
Romania LGBT Activists Hail Constitutional Court Ruling

ROMANIA: On 27 September 2018, the Constitutional Court reportedly ruled that same-sex couples have the same equal rights to a private and family life as heterosexual couples finding the issue falls under the terms of the protection of the fundamental right to a private and family life as guaranteed by Article 7 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the EU, Article 8 of the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms and Article 26 of the Romanian constitution.
Hong Kong government agrees laws targeting gay men are incompatible with Basic Law

HONG KONG: On 28 September 2018, it was reported that whilst the government conceded that seven contested sections under the Crimes Ordinance - covering homosexual buggery, gross indecency by a man, and the conduct of procuring a young person to resort to, or be on premise or vessel, for intercourse, prostitution, buggery or homosexual acts - were inconsistent with the Basic Law and the Hong Kong Bill of Rights, it did not want all seven of them to be declared unconstitutional. The government has asked the court to exercise its power of remedial interpretation by reading the offences in a way that would bring them in line with the Basic Law, so that they would be preserved before new laws are made.

27 September 2018

Italian appeals court upholds validity of US adoption by lesbian couple

ITALY: On 27 September 2018, it was reported that the Bologna appeals court has ruled that an Italian-American woman's adoption of her wife's biological child, approved in the US, is also valid in Italy, after it was initially declared invalid by the Bologna City Council and Italy’s Interior Ministry.

26 September 2018

‘No blood from gays’: Male donors to be asked about sex life

INDIA, Mumbai: On 26 September 2018, is was reported that blood banks in Mumbai recently received a new and more exhaustive blood donor screening questionnaire that will now require male donors to answer questions about their sexual behaviour and whether they have multiple partners. In October 2017 the state arm of the National Blood Transfusion Council guidelines reiterate that gay and bisexual men, transgenders and female sex workers can never donate blood as they have a higher risk of contracting HIV and Hepatitis B and C..

25 September 2018

Meridian approves "add the words" ordinance

UNITED STATES, Idaho: On 25 September 2018, Meridian City Council reportedly approved 4-2 a non discrimination ordinance that bans discrimination citywide based on gender identity or sexual orientation. Violators of the ordinance could face an infraction and a $250 fine.
India court rules lesbian couple can live together

INDIA, Kerala: On 25 September 2018. it was reported that a court in the southern state of Kerala has ruled in favour of forcibly separated lesbian couple S Sreeja, 40, and Aruna, 24, who want to live together. This is thought to be the first verdict of its kind since the Supreme Court decriminalised homosexuality earlier this month.
French bioethics body backs assisted reproduction for all women

FRANCE: On 25 September 2018, the National Consultative Ethics Committee (CCNE), reportedly ruled that access to medically assisted reproduction should be expanded to include single women and lesbian couples. Under the current law, technologies such as in vitro fertilisation (IVF) and artificial insemination are restricted to heterosexual couples and surrogacy is illegal. The government is expected to present a bill to parliament by the end of the year.

23 September 2018

Colorado makes history as the 1st state issuing intersex birth certificates

UNITED STATES, Colorado: On 23 September 2018, it was reported that Colorado became the first state to issue Anunnaki Ray Marquez with an intersex birth certificate that is medically accurate. In 2016 Sara Kelly Keenan became the first person in US history to receive an intersex birth certificate issued in her hometown of New York City, which has its own vital records department separate from New York State's.

21 September 2018

Kenya briefly lifts ban on lesbian film Rafiki ahead of Oscars

KENYA: On 21 September 2018 , Judge Wilfrida Okwany reportedly lifted a ban on the screening of the film ''Rafiki'' - about a lesbian relationship - for a week, so that it could be submitted for the Oscars.

20 September 2018

Consensual sex in adult same-sex unions now legal in Trinidad and Tobago

TRINIDAD & TOBAGO: On 20 September 2018, Justice Devindra Rampersad gave his final ruling that sections 13 and 16 of the Sexual Offences Act, which criminalised sexual relations between consenting adults of the same sex, was unconstitutional. He did not immediately strike down the sections, but invited further submissions on the issue whilst ruling that consenting adults of the same sex can no longer be prosecuted for engaging in sexual acts.
Law targeting transgender persons in Telangana read down temporarily

INDIA: On 18 September 2018, the Hyderabad High Court reportedly made an interim order based on a petition filed by transgender activist Vyjayanti Vasanta Moguli and two other activists in Hyderabad, calling the century-old Telangana Eunuchs Act 1329F, giving the state police arbitrary powers to arrest and prosecute transgender persons, 'wholly unconstitutional'. The Court ordered the government counsel to file a counter affidavit within four weeks and adjourned the hearing to 16 October.
Court: Anti-gay preachers had right to protest outside Pride

UNITED STATES, Tennessee: On 19 September 2018 , the US Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit ruled 2-1 that the ordering of John McGlone and Jeremy Peters to leave a public sidewalk, or else face arrest, for preaching against homosexuality outside of an LGBTQ pride festival in downtown Nashville violated their free speech rights protected by the First Amendment.
Opinion: John McGlone; Jeremy Peters v. Metropolitan Government of Nashville No. 17-6291 PDF 634.04kb 19 SEP 18
Separate room in OPDs for transgender people ordered

PAKISTAN: On 19 September 2018, the Lahore High Court on the petition moved by advocate Ishtiaq Chaudhry, reportedly directed the Punjab government to arrange a separate room in OPDs (Out Patient Departments) of all public hospitals of the province for the treatment of transgender community members.

19 September 2018

Victory! State Department Cannot Rely on its Binary-Only Gender Policy to Deny Passport to Nonbinary Intersex Citizen

UNITED STATES, Federal: On 18 September 2018, US District Judge R Brooke Jackson ruled the US State Department cannot deny a passport to Navy veteran Dana Zzyym who is intersex and identifies as neither male nor female. Judge Jackson found that the State Department exceeded its authority under the Passport Act of 1926 and barred the department from relying on its binary-only gender marker policy to withhold a passport.
Order: Dana Alix Zzyym v. Michael R Pompeo and Anor 15-cv-02362-RJB PDF 127.15kb 19 SEP 18
Romania Same-Sex Marriage Ban Referendum Date Set

ROMANIA: On 19 September 2018, it was reported that the nationwide referendum asking voters to vote on whether or not to change the definition of marriage in the Romanian constitution, specifying that it can only be a union between a man and a woman, is scheduled for 06- 07 October.
Study: Transgender nondiscrimination laws do not jeopardize public safety in restrooms

UNITED STATES, Massachusetts: On 19 September 2018, it was reported that a new study finds that Massachusetts' public accommodations nondiscrimination laws that include gender identity have no affect on the number or frequency of criminal incidents in restrooms, locker rooms, or other intimate spaces.
• Abstract: Gender Identity Nondiscrimination Laws in Public Accommodations: A Review of Evidence Regarding Safety and Privacy in Public Restrooms, Locker Rooms, and Changing Rooms 23 JUL 18
Federal Court Rules Wisconsin State Employee Health Insurance Must Cover for Transgender Workers

UNITED STATES, Wisconsin: On 18 September 2018, US District Court Judge William M Conley ruled in the Alina Boyden and Shannon Andrews v. Robert J Conlin, et al. case that denying health insurance for gender-affirming medical care violates the Constitution and federal non-discrimination law.
Opinion and Order: Alina Boyden and Shannon Andrews v. Robert J Conlin, et al. No. 3:17-cv-00264-wmc PDF 333.86kb 18 SEP 18
U.S. District Court Denies Move to End Injunction Blocking Transgender Military Ban

UNITED STATES, Federal: On 18 September 2018, US District Court Judge Jesus G Bernal rejected the Trump-Pence Administration's latest attempt to implement its discriminatory transgender military ban, denying a motion to dissolve the nationwide preliminary injunction previously issued in the Stockman v. Trump lawsuit.
• Order Denying Defendants' Motion: Aiden Stockman, et al. v. Donald J Trump, et al. No. EDCV 17-01799 JGB (KKx) PDF 136.18kb 18 SEP 18

18 September 2018

Court: Partner in same-sex partnership has right to residence permit

ESTONIA: On 18 September 2018, a circuit court was reported to have deemed unconstitutional the portion of the Aliens Act which does not provide a legal basis for the issuance of a fixed-term Estonian residence permit to the partner of an Estonian citizen in a registered same-sex partnership.

18 September 2018

Florida school district settles lawsuit brought by transgender student

UNITED STATES, Florida: On 11 September 2018, the US District Court Judge Roy B Dalton Jr approved the final settlement agreement, which grants the student, known as John Doe, permission to use the boys' bathrooms and locker rooms in the Volusia county school district.
• Order: Doe v. Volusia County School Board No. 6:18-cv-00102 PDF 139.95kb 11 SEP 18
Breakthrough for LGBT rights as Hong Kong to recognise same-sex partnerships in spousal visa applications

HONG KONG: On 18 September 2018 , Hong Kong reportedly announced that it will recognise overseas same-sex partnerships when granting dependant visas. The change came after a review prompted by a Court of Final Appeal ruling in July.
'Home Office won't recognise our same sex marriage' say Milton Keynes couple forced to live 4,000 miles apart

UNITED KINGDOM: On 18 September 2018 , it was reported that the Home Office had denied residency to British-born Ben Page's American architect husband Brian, an immigration judge referring to their marriage as a 'civil partnership'. The couple married in New York in 2014.

15 September 2018

New York City Will Allow Gender-Neutral 'X' On Birth Certificates

UNITED STATES, New York: On 12 September 2018, the New York City Council cleared Bill Introduction 954-A that will allow non-binary people born in the five boroughs to obtain a gender-neutral ''X'' on their birth certificates. The Bill now heads to Mayor Bill de Blasio for formal signature.

14 September 2018

Judge awards pro-marriage pastor $10,000 in online harassment case

UNITED STATES, West Virginia: On 14 September 2018, it was reported that Berkeley County magistrate Richard Stephens issued a default judgment in favor of Christian Pastor Richard Penkoski and his wife Amanda Penkoski with a settlement of $10,000 against Paula Bowers. The Penkoski's alleged Bowers broke the terms of an agreement to stop harassing them because of his ministry's stand on the ''sinfulness'' of homosexual acts and its opposition to same-sex ''marriage''.
Federal Court Allows Challenge to Discriminatory Adoption Placement Practices to Continue

UNITED STATES, Michigan: On 14 September 2018, the US District Court Judge Paul D Borman denied a motion to dismiss the complaint of Kristy Dumont, Dana Dumont and Others that alleges that permitting state-contracted, taxpayer-funded child placing agencies to exclude prospective adoptive families headed by same-sex couples based on religious objections to such families violates the Constitution.
• Opinion and Order: Kristy Dumont, Dana Dumont and Ors v. St Vincent Catholic Charities et al. No. 17-cv-13080 PDF 232.11kb 14 SEP 18

13 September 2018

Turkey fines TV channel for Pink's video with dancing of 'homosexual nature'

TURKEY: On 13 September 2018 , it was reported that the Turkish Radio and Television Supreme Council (RTUK) fined city of Bursa Broadcaster AS TV 17,000 Turkish liras for showing music video ''Secrets'' by Pink - that featured ''erotic dance figures of a homosexual nature'' - during hours when children and young people could watch and be negatively influenced.
Kenya ban on lesbian romance film challenged

KENYA: On 13 September 2018 , it was reported that Kenyan film maker Wanuri Kahiu had challenged the constitutionality of the banning of her film ''Rafiki'' by the Kenya Film Classification Board (KFCB) who objected to ''its homosexual theme and clear intent to promote lesbianism''.
All you need to know about the history of homosexuality in Indonesia

INDONESIA: On 13 September 2018, an article by Irwan Martua Hidayana, Associate Professor, Department of Anthropology, Universitas Indonesia, with contributions from Bimo Alim, showed that gender and sexual diversity are and have been inherent in Indonesian societies since before before colonialism and modernity exerted their strong influence in the society.

12 September 2018

FRANCE: On 12 September 2018, it was reported that the registrar reported lesbian couple, Alice Gondelle and her partner from the Breton department of Morbihanthe, to the French courts preventing them from naming their baby boy ''Ambre'', saying the name risked ''confusing the child in a way that could be harmful'' due to the fact that it is considered a girl's name.
Chile approves law for transgender citizens to change official details

CHILE: On 12 September 2018, Chamber of Deputies reportedly approved (95-46) a bill allowing people over the age of 14 to change their name and gender in official records. Children aged 14 to 18 must first obtain the consent of their parents or legal guardians. The gender identity law must be either rejected or entered onto the statute books by center-right President Sebastian Pinera within 30 days.
Western Australia Passes Law To Allow Expungement Of Historical Gay Convictions

AUSTRALIA, Western Australia: On 12 September 2018, it was reported that the State has passed laws to allow people charged under unjust homosexual laws to have the convictions removed from their criminal records. The expungement scheme will commence on 01 October. Applications will be made to the state's Department of Justice, which will display the details on its website.

11 September 2018

Asylum Application Rejected Because Afghan 'Homosexual' Doesn’t Watch Gay Porn

AUSTRIA: On 11 September 2018 , it was reported that the Austrian Federal Office for Asylum (BFA) rejected the asylum claim of an Afghan national finding it ''extremely unlikely that you are in actual communication with other men with no photos (resulting from chats) on your mobile phone'' and ''There should be interest here (as stated) in pornographic material of homosexuals, at least from favourited sites on the Internet''.
Gaidam signs bill against rape, homosexuality

NIGERIA, Yobe: On 10 September 2018, Yobe State governor, Ibrahim Gaidamit reportedly signed into law the State Penal Code. Amendment Law 2018, which prescribed punishment for rape, kidnapping and unnatural offences. Whoever commits rape, where the victim is a minor, shall be punished with imprisonment for life and where the victim is an adult, shall be jailed for a term of 25 years.

07 September 2018

Lesbian couple finally get a visa but it’s a ‘housewife’ permit

SOUTH AFRICA: On 07 September 2018 , it was reported that the Department of Home Affairs issued a visa on 30 August 2018 to civil union partners US citizen Wendy Kessman and South African Nomfundo Ngidi, following an August order of the High Court in Johannesburg. The couple entered into a civil union in January 2017. Since Kessman's tourist visa expired in March 2017, she has been unable to leave South Africa, legally work or study, open a bank account and drive and the visa issued does not allow Kessman to work or study in South Africa. The couple's lawyers will apply for a rectification of the visa.

06 September 2018

‘Gay sex is not a crime,’ says Supreme Court in historic judgement

INDIA: On 06 September 2018, the Supreme Court unanimously ruled that consensual adult gay sex is not a crime saying sexual orientation is natural and people have no control over it. Now, it is no longer an offence under Section 377 to engage in consensual gay sex in private.
• Judgment: Navtej Singh Johar & Ors. v. Union of India & Another No. 76 of 2018 PDF 2.67MB 06 SEP 18

04 September 2018

Israel Rejects Court-proposed Compromise to List Both Members of Lesbian Couple as Parents

ISRAEL: On 04 September 2018, the state reportedly announced that it has rejected a compromise proposed by the High Court of Justice to make it easier for both members of a lesbian couple to register as parents, throwing the decision back to the court. The state was responding to a petition submitted by Orly and Ravit Weisselberg-Zur, demanding that the process of registering parenthood for lesbian couples be the same as for heterosexual couples.

03 September 2018

Malaysian lawmakers, activists assail public caning of Muslim lesbian couple

MALAYSIA: On 03 August 2018, it was reported that human rights groups deplored the caning in the Sharia High Court in the state of Terengganu of two Malaysian Muslim women, aged 22 and 32, convicted under Islamic laws of attempting to have sex, saying it could worsen discrimination against people in Malaysia's lesbian, bisexual, gay and transgender community.

01 September 2018

Corbett mother loses suit against schools

UNITED STATES, Oregon: On 10 August 2018, US District Court Judge Michael H Simon ruled against Greta Leontiev who alleged that the Corbett School District and various individuals violated her Fourteenth Amendment rights by interfering with her parent-transgender-student-son relationship and her First Amendment rights by disparaging her religion. The son F.V. left his mother's home and stayed with several people associated with the Corbett School District and F.V. felt unsupported at home in his transition to male. The Court found that the district and employees did not attempt to drive a wedge between F.V. and his mother, as she alleged.
• Opinion and Order: Greta Leontiev v. Corbett School District, et al. No. 3:17-cv-772-SI PDF 159.07kb 10 AUG 18

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