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'Homophobic Attack' in Manchester's Gay Village Leaves Rugby Player With Broken Jaw

Attack

Manchester police are searching for a man (pictured above) in connection with a homophobic attack on Canal Street over the weekend that left a gay ruby player with a broken jaw.

Tom, 24, whose last name is being withheld, was promoting his LGBT rugby team, the Manchester Village Spartans, when the attack took place, Manchester Evening News reports:

Gareth Longley, spokesman for the Village Spartans, said: "We had been out on a recruitment drive that Saturday, and most of us were wearing Halloween outfits and had painted faces. We were just telling people what the club is about and trying to get new players and more support.

"When they walked into the Village a group of guys were making homophobic remarks at passers by. Our players walked up to them and everything calmed down and (the player) started chatting to them about the Spartans. One of the other group took offence and punched him in the face."

Det Con Louise Kelly, of GMP’s North Manchester division, said: “We believe this to be a homophobic attack and I want to make it clear that this kind of behaviour will not be tolerated on our streets.

Tom, who had to have a metal plate inserted into his face to repair his jaw, says the attack has left him shaken:

“It’s affected how I feel about going out in the Village and the gay scene in general. I was attacked on Canal Street, which is supposed to be a safe environment. I’m also not able to play rugby for three months while the plates in my jaw heal.”


Challenge To Northern Ireland's Same-Sex Marriage Ban Launched - VIDEO

Gay marriage ban northern ireland

Gay rights campaigners in Northern Ireland are preparing a challenge to the legitimacy of the province’s ban on same-sex marriage, reports Buzzfeed.

Northern Ireland is the only part of the UK where gay marriage remains illegal. Politicians at the Northern Irish Assembly have rejected motions calling for same-sex marriage on three occasions, most recently in April. This has been due in part to the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) invoking a “petition of concern” to effectively veto any vote on the issue. Petitions of concern were designed to ensure no laws were passed exclusively by politicians representing either the nationalist or unionist communities. 

According to Gavin Boyd of activist group the Rainbow Project, preparations are underway for a test case challenging the status of same-sex couples who marry elsewhere in the UK but are not considered to be married when they travel to Northern Ireland.

“The legal challenge as it is planned involves two people who were lawfully married in England returning home to Northern Ireland, where they are no longer considered to be married. We consider that to be unlawful, unjust, and unjustifiable.”

Watch a report on last April's vote, AFTER THE JUMP...

The Republic of Ireland, meanwhile, is due to hold a referendum on same-sex marriage early next year.

Continue reading "Challenge To Northern Ireland's Same-Sex Marriage Ban Launched - VIDEO" »


UK Men Beaten in Homophobic Attack for Singing Songs from the Musical 'Wicked'

Manchester

Two men were beaten in a homophobic attack by a group of approximately 15 men prompted because the victims were singing songs from the musical Wicked on a tram from Bury to Manchester, the Manchester Evening News reports.

AttackTheir singing at first caused a passenger on the tram to attack them verbally, but they were followed when they got off and assaulted by a larger group "called over" by the passenger in Piccadilly Gardens.

The attack happened shortly before 1 am, reports the paper:

Jean Claude, a 25-year-old retail assistant, from Bury, told the M.E.N. how the attack had left him ‘shattered’.

He said: “It has destroyed every bit of confidence I have. It will be a while before I go anywhere on my own. I don’t know when I’ll feel safe to go into Manchester again.

“They split my forehead, my lip, broke my nose. My eyes are black and swollen. My ribs are painful, I can’t move much. My face is going to be scarred for life. That has upset me.”

Jean Claude said he cannot remember anything from the moment the gang of 15 men approached.

But pal Jake, from Radcliffe, told how he saw the group stamping on his friend while he was lying on the ground.

Police are investigating the incident.


Gay Couple Kicked Off London Bus After Being Told They Weren't 'Real Men' For Kissing

89

Transport for London has launched an investigation into a complaint made by a gay couple claiming they were thrown off a bus and berated by the homophobic driver for sharing a kiss.

Jack James, 23, and his partner were on board the number 89 bus when the incident occurred back in August, the London Evening Standard reports

Mr James, an events coordinator who lives in Greenwich said: “We were chatting away when my partner gave me a peck on the lips.

“The bus driver shouted ‘Oi you two don’t do that on my f****** bus or you can get off, I don’t want to watch that.”

He said that initially they thought the driver could not be speaking to them.

He added: “When the bus stopped at our stop I walked up to the driver and politely asked the driver if he was talking to us.

“His reply was ‘Yes, it’s my bus it is my rules and I don’t want to watch that, it’s disgusting, get off the bus’.

“Once we got off the bus we were fuming and I was shaking. The bus stopped again and he shouted  and told us we were not real men and we should f*** off.”

Said TfL's Head of Bus Operations Ken Davidson:

All customers have the right to use our services without fear of being abused and offensive behaviour is completely unacceptable.  We would like to reassure Mr James that this matter is being taken very seriously and that a thorough investigation is being conducted by Go Ahead.

The news comes less than a week after hundreds of protesters flooded a Sainsbury's supermarket in Brighton, UK  for a "big consensual kiss-in" to protest the treatment of a lesbian couple told to by a security guard to stop their "disgusting" kissing. 


Hundreds of LGBT Protesters and Allies Flood UK Supermarket for Kiss-In Protest: VIDEO

Sainsburys

Prompted by a security guard who told a lesbian couple to stop their "disgusting" kissing (on National Coming Out Day, no less), hundreds of protesters flooded a Sainsbury's supermarket in Brighton, UK on Wednesday for a "big consensual kiss-in" to protest the couple's ejection.

Sainsbury's has agreed to donate £100 but protesters say that's offensive given the supermarket's profits for the first three months of 2014 were £898 million.

Watch some heartwarming videos of the protest, AFTER THE JUMP...

Kiss

Continue reading "Hundreds of LGBT Protesters and Allies Flood UK Supermarket for Kiss-In Protest: VIDEO" »


UK Supermarket Apologizes After Security Guard Tells Lesbian Couple To Stop Their 'Disgusting' Kissing

Sain

And it happened on National Coming Out Day.

Twenty-two year old Annabelle Paige had just given her girlfriend a "light kiss" at a Sainsbury's supermarket in Brighton, England when the security approached the couple and asked them to stop kissing. Paige recounted the incident to The Times of London.

Ann"(The security guard) told us she was sorry to have said that but a customer had complained saying what we were doing was ‘disgusting’ and had claimed they were worried for the safety of their child so the security guard felt she had to come and say something to us. That word, disgusting, it really resonated and shook me."

"I get that if another customer is uncomfortable that’s a bad thing … but the problem is the other customer was in the wrong and essentially being homophobic. The guard didn’t seem to understand that, I was absolutely humiliated."

Paige also claims that the security guard asked the couple to leave the store, something Sainsbury's denies. The supermarket chain has since issued an apology to the women:

"This should never have happened - it is clear that Miss Paige and her partner were not behaving inappropriately and we are very sorry that they were treated in this way. We have called Miss Paige to apologise and will be making a donation to a charity of her choice."

According to the Daily Mail, Paige also claims that the security guard revealed to her that she herself is also a lesbian:

The security guard later apologised, saying that she herself was gay and had simply been asked to speak to us by another customer who found us “disgusting” and was “worried for her child."

I felt sorry for the guard. However, the fact is that she perpetrated a hate crime on behalf of Sainsbury’s.

Paige has accepted the company's apology as well as their £100 donation to the charity of her choice.


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