Dallas Voice (Dallas, Tex.), Vol. 22, No. 35, Ed. 1 Friday, January 13, 2006 Page: 22 of 60
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22 1 dallasvoice.com I 01.13.06
South African activists plan
protest over gay blood ban
From Staff and Wire Reports
Gay men in South African on Thursday
pledged to descend on branches of the South
African National Blood Service on Friday in a
campaign to force the service to scrap its ban on
blood donations from gays, according to a report
published Thursday on the Dispatch Online.
David Baxter is spokesperson for the Gay and
Lesbian Alliance, which is pushing for donors to
be allowed to give blood without disclosing their
Baxter said the alliance has about 157,000
members, and that about 150,000 of those mem-
bers are gay men, giving the organization a
strong base from which to launch its protest.
"This will be a massive national campaign
which will hopefully force the blood services to
treat all blood the same," Baxter said.
The alliance had also lodged a complaint with
the Human Rights Commission.
The commission supports the blood service's
attempts to ensure a safe blood supply, but the
service should not employ stereotypes or exclude
people in trying to achieve this goal, said Jody
Kollapen, chairman of the Human Rights
He said the challenge is to find a scientific
method to safeguard blood that does not have a
negative impact on people wanting to perform a
But Dr. Robert: Cookes, medical director for
the blood service, denied that his agency was
making any value judgments.
"Our intention is purely to protect the health of
the recipient of the blood," Cookes said.
Cookes said gay men are not the only group
excluded from being blood donors. The agency
also prohibits donations from anyone who had
been involved in "risky behavior, including going
into malaria areas."
The medical director said that anyone who
engages in risky behavior and then donates blood
would be putting people's lives at risk. But he
acknowledged that the blood service is consider-
ing changing the wording of the question about
male-to-male sexual contact because it could be
seen as "gender insensitive."
By Rex Wockner Wockner News Service
Jamaican gay man drowns while trying
to scape anti-gay mob
A Jamaican gay man, Nokia Cowen, drowned
Dec. 28 after he jumped into Kingston's harbor
while being chased by a mob, according to the
Jamaica Forum for Lesbians, All-Sexuals and
Gays, the country's best-known gay group.
"In an attempt to flee this mob, the young man
jumped into the Kingston harbor and perished
because he could not swim," the organization
said. "JFLAG condemns the prevalence of inci-
dents such as this and ... we implore the highest
members of government to clearly indicate that
violence based on sexual orientation, both per-
ceived and actual, is unacceptable in Jamaica."
Anti-gay violence is common in Jamaica. In
another recent incident, leading AIDS activist
Steve Harvey was killed in Kingston on Nov. 30.
According to police, at least four assailants
forced their way into his home and abducted him
in his Jamaica AIDS Support company car. His
body was found in a rural area with gunshot
wounds to the back and head.
Gay activists in Jamaica and elsewhere also
have been fighting a years-long battle with sever-
al famous dancehall reggae singers whose lyrics,
activists say, support anti-gay violence or, in
some instances, murdering gays and lesbians.
Elephant Man, Vybz Kartel, Beenie Man, Buju
Banton, T.O.K, Bounty Killer, Capleton and
Sizzla are among the singers targeted in those
United Kingdom law allowing gay
couples to adopt goes into effect
On the heels of the United Kingdom's new
Civil Partnership Act granting registered same-
sex couples the rights and obligations of mar-
riage, England and Wales extended adoption
rights to unmarried straight and gay couples on
Adoption previously was limited to married
opposite-sex couples and single people. The
change was passed by Parliament three years ago
but only now took effect.
"This is very important at a time when too
many children wait too long in temporary care
waiting for an adoptive family or, in some cases,
never have the chance of adoption at all," said
Felicity Collier, chief executive of the British
Association for Adopting and Fostering.
Transgender vicar, wife suing U.K.
government over marriage law
A vicar in Port Talbot, Wales, who changed her
sex is planning to sue the United Kingdom gov-
ernment before the European Court of Human
Rights because she will be forced to annul her
marriage to her wife when recording the change
in government records, IC Wales reported.
Dian Parry, 66, and her wife of 45 years, Anita,
would have to end their union and enter a civil
partnership instead under the United Kingdom's
new same-sex Civil Partnership Act.
The couple plan to argue that this violates the
European Convention on Human Rights' guaran-
tees of respect for privacy and family life as well
as provisions on the right to marry and not be dis-
Scottish cardinal denounces
U.K.'s Civil Partnership Act
Cardinal Keith O'Brien, the leader of
Scotland's Roman Catholics, denounced the
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Vercher, Dennis. Dallas Voice (Dallas, Tex.), Vol. 22, No. 35, Ed. 1 Friday, January 13, 2006, newspaper, January 13, 2006; Dallas, Texas. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth238891/m1/22/: accessed February 19, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Special Collections.