What a bunch of bull.
It Starts With Me: Trailer (by TheONECampaign)
ONE members around the world join together in the fight against AIDS.
These stories can create change. And so can you.
The cast of My Transsexual Summer have joined thousands around the globe in calling for the World Health Organization to recognize that trans is not an illness.
More than 35,000 people around the world have backed a Change.org petition started by Maxwell Zachs, a cast member from last summer’s hit UK reality TV show My Transsexual Summer.
The campaign calls on the World Health Organisation (WHO) to remove transsexualism from its mental disorders list.
‘Gender is not an illness, its just a part of who I am, like being Jewish or vegetarian or sometimes talking too much,’ explains Zachs in the petition.
‘Considering transsexual people as mentally ill serves only to contribute to their discrimination.
‘So many countries have requested WHO to remove transsexuality from that list. Even the European Parliament in September 2011 adopted a resolution calling on the WHO to cease to consider transsexuality as a disease. But today transsexuality is still there.’
Homosexuality was declassified as a mental illness by WHO in 1990 and the organization is now revising its categorization of transsexuality.
‘It’s time to say it loud and clear, “transsexuals are not sick”, said Zachs.
He added: ‘Now is the time to stop stigmatising transsexual people.’
International Day of Action for Trans Depathologization on 20 October calls for the removal of the categories of ‘gender dysphoria’ and ‘gender identity disorders’ from the WHO diagnosis manuals which will be updated in 2013 and 2015.
The Stop Trans Pathologization website is urging the trans community and supporters to join their fight by taking their own actions.
GSN has contacted the WHO for a response.
Published September 10, 2012
Burma’s AIDS epidemic mostly affects marginalized groups, such as the gay community. In a country where homosexuality remains illegal, finding and treating gay patients is a challenge for the few health workers devoted to their treatment. VOA News reports that an annual religious event called a Nat festival, however, is one time when the gay community can network - and talk to health workers about treatment.
Note that no home testing kits are currently approved for use in Canada and only one has been approved in the US by the FDA (OraQuick test from OraSure with the caveat that it is not 100% accurate).
Remember, if you are going to play, play safe.
September 10, 2012
For immediate release
CuraHerbDistributor (curaherbdistributor.com) is attempting to sell online unlicensed home-use HIV test kits for use with urine, saliva and blood samples. It is important to note that there are currently no HIV test kits authorized for home use in Canada.
CuraHerbDistributor’s kits carry the “Home Aware” brand and have not been evaluated by Health Canada for safety and effectiveness. Accordingly, these kits may provide Canadians with false test results, such as a failure to indicate HIV in an infected individual, or indicate HIV when none is present.
In addition, CuraHerbDistributor is also attempting to sell online a number of other test kits under the “Home Aware” brand. Health Canada has not licenced “Home Aware” tests kits for any of the following conditions indicated on the website, namely syphilis, trichomonas vaginalis, gonorrhea, chlamydia, hepatitis (B/C) or herpes simplex.
Who is affected:
What consumers should do:
- Consult your healthcare practitioner if you have used any home-use test kits sold via the curaherbdistributor.com website or under the “Home Aware” brand and are concerned about your health.
- Report any complaints related to test kits sold via the curaherbdistributor.com website or under the “Home Aware” brand to Health Canada (see below).
What Health Canada is doing:
Health Canada is reminding Canadian retailers that it is illegal to advertise or sell unlicensed HIV and STD test kits in Canada. In addition, Health Canada has alerted its international partners about Curaherbdistributor.com test kits available via the Internet.
Health Canada’s It’s Your Health series has articles on Medical Test Kits for Home Use and Buying Medical Devices over the Internet, as well as one on how to protect yourself from HIV/AIDS. To confirm whether a device is licensed in Canada, please refer to the Medical Devices Active Licence Listing (MDALL).
Health Canada is working with the Canadian Border Services Agency to prevent importation of all CuraHerbDistributor.com test kits and will continue to monitor the situation, take appropriate action and inform Canadians, when necessary
All kinds of wrong of the day…
LAS VEGAS, Nev. — A lesbian couple in Nevada was told by an admissions officer at a local hospital that they would need a medical power of attorney for one partner to make decisions for another in the event of a crisis, despite being in a legal domestic partnership sanctioned by the state.
Brittney Leon was checking into the Spring Valley Hospital for complications related to her pregnancy, but during the admittance, the admissions officer informed her and her partner, Terri-Ann Simonelli, that the hospital policy required gay couples to have a medical power of attorney.
Even though the couple offered to go home and get their Nevada-issued certificate designating them as legal domestic partners, the admissions officer said that it wouldn’t matter — the policy was the policy, reported the Las Vegas Review-Journal.
In Nevada, the domestic partnership law passed in 2009 provides all the rights of married couples.
A woman who identified herself as public relations representative at Spring Valley Hospital told a Review-Journal reporter in a phone interview that the hospital policy requires gay couples have power of attorney in order to make medical decisions for each other.
When asked if she was aware of Nevada’s domestic partnership law, she accused the reporter of bias and hung up the telephone.
The domestic partnership law states: “Domestic partners have the same rights, protections and benefits, and are subject to the same responsibilities, obligations and duties under law, whether derived from statutes, administrative regulations, court rules, government policies, common law or any other provisions or sources of law, as are granted to and imposed upon spouses.”
Sadly, in the addition to the stress at admissions, Leon lost her baby.
The couple said they don’t intend to file a complaint or lawsuit against Spring Valley Hospital. But they do hope their problem will lead to more awareness of the domestic partnership law and for fair treatment of gay people.
CDC’s Let’s Stop HIV Together Campaign Video (by CDCStreamingHealth)
New PSA from CDC.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Let’s Stop HIV Together national HIV awareness and anti-stigma campaign features the stories of 22 individuals living with HIV and the steps they are taking to encourage others in the fight against HIV. Learn more at www.ActAgainstAIDS.org. Get the Facts. Get Tested. Get Involved.
Gay ‘cure’ therapy will no longer be available in the basic health insurance package in the Netherlands, Dutch Health Minister Edith Schippers announced today.
In a letter to parliament, Schippers said homosexuals who suffer psychologically because of their sexual orientation should be offered pastoral guidance rather than medical treatment, since homosexuality is not a psychiatric disorder.
The announcement will affect groups such as Christian-inspired mental health organisation ‘Different’, which claims to provide therapy for homosexuals to help ‘repress their sinful urges’.
Insurance companies could not refuse to pay for treatment as these groups were officially recognised as providers of psychological help, further fuelling right-wing groups who saw this state backing as proof that homosexuality could be cured or changed.
Schippers said: “There’s no question of a psychiatric diagnosis [for homosexuals], no psychiatric treatment, and therefore there should be no insured care.”
‘Different’ will still be entitled to provide pastoral counselling for anyone who is unhappy with their homosexual feelings, but this is to be paid for by the individual.
A collection of new studies published in a special issue of the Journal of Bisexuality examines the unique challenges and experiences of those who have sexual attractions or engage in sexual behavior with both men and women. People who identify as bi experience biphobia from both straight and gay people, forcing them to reconsider the language by which they identify and how they form their social communities. Here are a few examples of the findings from the research:
- Women who identified as bi or lesbian reported the best health when their sexual identity matched their recent sexual history.
- The health of women who used the ambiguous label of “queer” was not impacted by their sexual behavior in the same way.
- The sexual behavior of bi women fits no stereotypical mold — in one study they were almost evenly divided among those who have only male sexual partners, only female sexual partners, some of both, or none at all.
- Bisexual men struggle to find community and people whom they can discuss their identity with, negatively impacting their mental health.
- Bisexual men see women sexual partners as “safer,” choosing to use condoms with men to prevent HIV/STI transmission but with women for pregnancy prevention purposes.
Studying the sexual behavior of individuals in the LGBT community is important for health advocacy purposes. If stereotypes are being used to guide funding for LGBT health outreach efforts instead of actual data, that could be incredibly wasteful or ineffective. For example, as researcher Brian Dodge points out, sexual health programs that target gay and bi men focus only on their experiences with male partners, which deprives bi men of important guidance they should have about their full range of behaviors.
Furthermore, these studies illuminate in new and profound ways the impact of biphobia. Earlier this year, Britain’s Open University published a meta-analysis of the research on mental health in the bisexual community and the need to identify it specifically:
Separate biphobia out from homophobia, recognising that there are specific issues facing bisexual people such as lack of acknowledgement of their existence, stereotypes of greediness or promiscuity, and pressure to be either gay or straight… Recognise the role that biphobia and bisexual invisibility play in creating negative outcomes for bisexual people.
But perhaps the most important takeaway is a reminder that labels can help communicate the nature of individuals’ identities, but they can be just as destructive when they create expectations to be fulfilled.
For those in Ontario.
Research could lead to improved healthcare provision for sexual minorities
Gay rights activists in Uganda have opened up Uganda’s first ever LGBTI clinic which will specifically focus on homosexuals HIV/Aids and Sexually Transmitted Infections and general welfare.
The clinic will run under the auspices of gay lobby group, Ice Breakers Uganda. It was opened on Sunday in Kampala among jubilations and renewed hope among the Ugandan gay community for confidentiality in access to treatment.
Dennis Wamala, an official with Ice Breakers said the LGBTI clinic will be run by professional health workers who offer care, support and treatment.
He told Behind the Mask that the clinic would offer “better avenues in health seeking behaviours among the LGBTI community.”
He said, “LGBTI people often fear to go to hospitals due to stigma. But here (at the clinic) they can easily open up.”
Wamala said he was particularly concerned that some of the mannerisms and expressions of gay and transgender people were a source of ridicule in mainstream health centres.
Brian Nkooyoyo, the Ice Breakers Director said the clinic was now open and offered services to all LGBTI for free. It currently has only one bed admission facility.
The opening of a clinic specifically focusing on LGBTI community is a desperate effort to address welfare among Ugandan homosexuals faced with increased hostilities.
The National Association for the Research and Therapy of Homosexuality (NARTH) is rabidly fundraising in an attempt to block a California bill that would limit how ex-gay therapy could be offered in the state. The bill, SB 1172, would prevent minors from receiving ex-gay therapy and require all interested adults to sign an informed consent form that describes how the therapy is harmful and ineffective. NARTH’s latest email today features a list of legal “concerns” from the anti-gay Pacific Justice Institute that are incredibly easy to debunk:
‘CONCERN’: This bill strictly bans counselors from telling young people that it is possible to overcome same-sex attractions and feelings–even if the minor or their parents seek out this type of counseling.
REALITY: Given that it’s not possible to “overcome same-sex attractions and feelings,” the bill simply requires that counselors not lie to clients in order to sell them a bill of goods.
‘CONCERN’: It mandates a new government form that adults must be given before a counselor or therapist can talk to them about “changing” their sexual orientation. The form would strongly discourage anyone from attempting such a change.
REALITY: Discouraging people from harmful therapy by accurately informing them about it is a good thing.
‘CONCERN’: It imposes an absurd government orthodoxy that insists it is possible to change one’s gender, be bisexual, or go from straight to gay, but it is dangerous and not really possible for an LGBT person to become straight.
REALITY: That “absurd government orthodoxy” happens to also be reality. People who are trans don’t “change” their gender — they actualize it, bisexuality exists, and nobody has ever posited the idea that sexual orientation can change in other directions. People just come out.
‘CONCERN’: It blames efforts to change sexual orientation for gay suicides, substance abuse, and even relationship problems.
REALITY: The extent to which ex-gay therapy causes harm cannot be overstated.
‘CONCERN’: It suggests government intervention in families that do not fully embrace their teens’ sexual choices.
REALITY: Being gay isn’t a “sexual choice” any more than being straight is. The intervention is to protect teens from trauma that could haunt them for the rest of their lives.
‘CONCERN’: It creates unprecedented legal liability for psychiatrists, psychologists, therapists, counselors, social workers and others who suggest that it is possible to change one’s sexual orientation.
REALITY: Health professionals should be liable for peddling false claims and harmful treatments.
‘CONCERN’: In short, the bill violates freedom of speech, the right to privacy, and family autonomy.
REALITY: The state of California has every right to regulate health standards for the protection of its citizens. Ex-gay therapy is a service that is sold, not a personal liberty.
Perhaps in the long run, the most valuable aspect of this bill will ultimately be how it shines light on the motives and claims of the ex-gay movement. If these are the best arguments they can offer to defend their promotion of stigmatizing, self-hating counseling, then they may well be helping to accelerate their inevitable demise.
She is My Son The pain of being an Intersex in Uganda (by uhspauganda)
HUMAN RIGHTS DEFENDERS CALL FOR ACTION TO PROTECT INTERSEX CHILDREN AND PEOPLE IN UGANDA
Two human rights groups in Uganda today launched a documentary entitled “She is My Son- The Pain of being an Intersex person in Uganda.” At the launch the groups urged the Uganda government to protect intersex people by making available information on intersexuality to families. The two organizations, Support Initiative for People with atypical Sex Development (Sipd Uganda) and Uganda Health and Science Press Association noted with concern that many intersex people are denied their full potential in life for simply being who they are.