IconMilly Shaw

Milly Shaw

Milly is the Editor and one of the founders of Lesbilicious. She co-ordinates the writing team, and even writes the odd word on occasion. Milly loves a careful metaphor and hates multiple exclamation marks. She admires the works of Margaret Atwood, Hilary Mantle, Jeanette Winterson and Sarah Connor.

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Lesbian heiress Casey Johnson ‘died of diabetes-related complications’

American heiress Casey Johnson died of natural causes, according to a coroner’s report.

The late heiress was found dead at a friend’s home on the 5th of January.

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Life after Le Tigre – interview with MEN

MEN (the New York production, DJing and remix team turned art pertformance collective fronted by Le Tigre’s JD Samson) spoke exclusively to Jane Bradley about Dizzee Rascal, queer babies and beating The Gossip at bowling.

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Free anti-homophobia DVD for every school in UK

Every secondary school in Britain will receive a free Hollyoaks/Skins-style DVD in February, as part of Stonewall’s campaign to end homophobic bullying.

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‘Bad Girls: The Musical’ on stage again

Bad Girls, the UK’s best-loved prison drama, has been resurrected as a musical stage production.

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Bi women ‘use monogamy and polyamory as relationship strategies’

A University of Toronto study reveals that bisexual women change their sexual identities over time, rather than defining themselves rigidly as monogamous or polyamorous.

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UK Parliament to host its first gay wedding

The first gay civil wedding in the Houses of Parliament could be held before the General Election.

John Berkow, Speaker of the House told reporters at a Westminster lunch last week: “My very confident expectation is that we will get a licence and I hope it will be within a matter of weeks.”

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Ex-Le Tigre band MEN touring UK

New York band and art/performance collective MEN are playing three rare gigs in the UK this week.

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Prop 8 trial to broadcast on YouTube

The trial concerning the constitutionality of Prop 8, California’s ban on gay marriage starts today, and will be broadcast on YouTube.

The Californian ballot initiative passed in the November 2008 state elections currently forbids gay couples to marry. The federal trial, which is expected to last two to three weeks, conducted by Chief US District Judge Vaughn Walker, will decide whether this contravenes the US Constitution’s guarantee of equal protection by laws.

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Do ‘pro-gay’ Tories really care about lesbians?

For years it was unthinkable to be both Tory and gay. Even today to be a member of both the Conservative party and the LGBT community still causes raised eyebrows, especially for lesbians, who have been woefully underrepresented in the political world, writes Daniel Sperling.

But despite this perception, opinion polls and surveys show that there is substantial support for the Conservatives amongst the LGBT community.

Clearly the Conservative party of 2009 is not the same one as the days of Section 28, but how much of a radical change has the party really undergone?

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G-spot myth survey ignores lesbian and bi women

A British scientific study which concluded the G-spot is a myth discounted the experiences of lesbian and bisexual women in its research.

Study leader, Dr Andrea Burri, said that the survey’s results would help to counter the “irresponsible” claim of “an entity that has never been proven”, and one that inhibits many men and women. But Beverley Whipple, emeritus professor at Rutgers University, New Jersey, dismissed the study as “flawed”. Author of ‘The G Spot and other discoveries about human sexuality’ and a proponent of the erogenous zone, Whipple criticised the research for failing to take into account evidence given by lesbian and bisexual women.

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BBC newsreader comes out

BBC newsreader Jane Hill has announced she is gay.

Hill, 40, who regularly co-presents the 11-2pm slot on BBC News 24 and read the BBC’s lunchtime bulletin on Christmas Day, formerly outed herself in Ariel, the corporation’s in-house magazine.

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The 8 biggest LGBT news events of the 2000s

It’s no exageration to say that the past ten years has seen huge changes for LGBT people in the UK, writes Milly Shaw. Cultural attitudes have improved vastly, and we have more legal protections than ever before. Of course there’s still a long way to go – casual discrimination is still sadly an everyday occurrence for many people, and homophobic murders still hit the headlines depressingly often.

But to remind us of how far we’ve come, we present to you (in reverse order) the 8 most important changes to the law for LGBT people from the past decade.

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Happy Christmas from Lesbilicious

Lesbilicious will be closed from 24 December 2009 to 4 January 2010. So until then have a very merry Christmas and a happy new year!

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Lesbian fiction “obscene”, says Turkish government

The Istanbul Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office in Turkey has launched an investigation into a work of lesbian fiction, calling female same-sex relationships “obscene.”

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103 complaints for BBC website headline

A BBC website story with the headline ‘Should Homosexuals Face Execution?’ has triggered 103 complaints in less than 24 hours.

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Brain damage forces Peter Tatchell to give up politics

Brain injuries sustained while protesting have forced human rights campaigner Peter Tatchell to stand down as the Green Party parliamentary candidate for Oxford East.

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‘I’m fighting for gay rights’ – Gordon Brown

Prime Minister Gordon Brown has said he is pushing for British civil partnerships to be legally recognised across the EU.

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Houston, Texas elects lesbian mayor

The USA’s fourth-largest city has elected an openly gay woman to be mayor.

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The decade’s 10 most lesbilicious TV moments

It’s been a busy decade for lady loving ladies in that business we call show. We’ve come out of the closets and onto the small screen. But what were the highlights? Here, Kaite Welsh gives an entirely subjective view about her top 10 lesbian TV moments.

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Hymen renamed ‘vaginal corona’ by Swedish health group

There’s no such thing as ‘breaking your hymen’ through first-time sex, using a tampon or horse-riding, according to a new myth-busting booklet about hymens produced by the Swedish Association for Sexuality Education.

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Austria legalises civil partnerships

The Austrian parliament today passed a bill which will allow same-sex couples to have civil unions.

Gay couples in civil unions will have some of the same rights as married heterosexual couples, such as access to a pension if one partner dies and alimony in the event of a separation.

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Woman sells ‘right to marriage’ on ebay

A heterosexual woman is offering to sell her right to marry on ebay to raise funds for a LGBT charity.

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New handbook for tackling homophobic language in schools

Gay rights charity Stonewall has launched a new guide to help teachers challenge homophobic language in schools.

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Election of lesbian bishop ‘raises serious questions’ – Archbishop of Canterbury

Archbishop of Canterbury Dr Rowan Williams yesterday called on Anglicans in the USA to block the appointment of a lesbian bishop.

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Tennis star Amelie Mauresmo retires

French tennis player Amelie Mauresmo has announced that she is retiring from the sport.

“I’ve come here to announce the end of my career. I made this decision after careful consideration,” said an emotional Mauresmo in a Paris news conference.

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New York rejects gay marriage

New York has rejected a bill to make gay marriage legal in the state. The state senate voted 24-38 to reject the bill, despite earlier approval of the bill.

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Lesbian Dutch footballers dropped from national team

Two players in the Dutch national women’s football team have have lost their places in the national squad, allegedly because their relationship was causing problems in the team.

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Perez Hilton forces 80s TV actress to come out

Meredith Baxter, star of 1980s sitcom ‘Family Ties’ today came out as a lesbian on American TV.

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1 in 5 HIV+ people in UK harassed

One in five people with HIV in the UK have been assaulted, harassed or threatened in the past year, according to a new study released on World AIDS Day.

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I Love Kissing Girls 2010 calendar

An all-queer calendar featuring lesbian and bisexual models is now on sale.

The ‘I Love Kissing Girls 2010’ calendar features 12 sets of couples – and trios – kissing in scenarios ranging from lifts and beaches to football changing rooms, graveyards and even supermarket carparks.

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Spanish gay magazine Zero goes bust

Spain’s leading gay magazine has been the latest LGBT publication to become a victim of the global recession.

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Straight couple in legal battle for civil partnership

A straight couple hoping to be the first heterosexuals in the UK to have a civil partnership have been refused by their local registry office.

Katherine Doyle and Tom Freeman have now vowed to fight the decision in the courts.

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Books needed for Irish lesbian fundraising day

Ireland’s only lesbian resource centre is calling for book donations for a fundraising Books ‘n’ Buns Day.

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Anger at homophobic preacher’s welcome at London university

Students at a London university are protesting the planned visit of an extremist Islamist preacher who encourages violence against gay people.

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Europe forces UK to u-turn on ‘gays in church’ rules

UK laws which allow religious groups to refuse employment to LGBT staff contravene European legislation, the European Commission (EC) has announced.

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Who’s allowed to make lesbian jokes?

Everyone has heard jokes that negatively stereotype lesbians, writes Eddie Acorn Edmondson. Lesbians move in on the first date. Lesbians are dungareed fashion disasters. Lesbians – despite being sport crazy – are overweight. Lesbians like nothing better than styling their hair like that ‘lady off of the horse racing’ (Claire Balding). And, my favourite: Lesbians hate men.

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‘Allow civil partnerships in churches’ – Stonewall

Gay rights campaign group Stonewall has revealed plans to lobby the Government to allow civil partnerships to take place in religious buildings.

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USA’s oldest LGBT newspaper shuts down

The USA’s largest LGBT publishing company has shut down, causing the immediate close of five LGBT newspapers and magazines.

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Sam Fox on ‘I’m a celebrity…’

The 2009 series of ‘I’m a celebrity, get me out of here’ has launched – with 3 openly gay contestants.

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“Civil partnerships are heterophobic” – straight couple

A heterosexual couple who don’t believe in the institution of marriage are fighting for the right to have a civil partnership.

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French lesbian wins 10-year adoption fight

A ten-year legal battle has ended in victory for a French lesbian couple trying to a adopt a child.

48-year old ‘Emmanuelle B’ applied to adopt a child in 1999. She applied as an individual but did not hide her relationship with another woman, and was repeatedly turned down, as France currently does not allow same-sex couples to adopt.

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Greece and Cyprus most anti-gay countries in Europe

Discrimination against LGBT people is worse in Europe’s Mediterranean countries, with more people in Cyprus, Greece, Italy and France believing that discrimination against LGBT people is widespread in their country.

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Part-time news writer required for Lesbilicious

Lesbilicious.co.uk publishes news relevant to lesbian/bisexual women every day Monday-Friday, and we are looking to expand our team of news writers.

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Jan Moir is Stonewall’s Bigot of the Year

Jan Moir has been named Bigot of the Year at the annual Stonewall Awards thanks to her vicious article about Stephen Gately two weeks ago in the Daily Mail. Moir was a late entrant to the category and shares the award with Father John Owen, who was voted Bigot of the Year by thousands of Stonewall supporters for claiming that the majority of child abuse was carried out by gay men.

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Are you in the Facebook closet?

So you’re Out, writes Kathryn Schneider. You summoned all your courage and you kicked the closet door open with your Converse-clad foot. Mum knows, Dad knows, your hair stylist knows, even the neighbour’s dog knows. So why do you still leave the ‘Interested In’ category on your Facebook profile blank?

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Schoolchildren to be taught about same-sex relationships

From September 2011 all 15-year-olds must receive at least one year of sex and relationship lessons and parents will no longer have the right to withdraw students from sex education lessons, Ed Balls, the Schools Secretary, announced yesterday.

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Newcastle University calling for gay scene research volunteers

Researchers from Newcastle University are looking for people based in the North East of England to talk about their experiences of the local gay scene.

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Maine rejects gay marriage

Voters in the US state of Maine have repealed a state law that would have allowed same-sex couples to marry.

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‘Jewish terrorist’ arrested in Tel Aviv LGBT centre shooting incident

A 37-year-old Israeli man has been arrested in connected with the shooting at a Tel Aviv LGBT centre in August 2009.

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Crowds gather for London hate crime vigil

Thousands of people gathered on Saturday night in Trafalgar Square, London, in a vigil for the victims of homophobic attacks.

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Lesbian icons – who they are and why they are

What does it take to make a lesbian icon? What is that particular quality in an entertainer that renders them dear to the heart of gay girls and boys everywhere? These are questions I’ve been pondering in preparation for my new show A Brief History of Divas, which is coming up in London in November, writes Terry Sanderson..

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Lesbian police officer barred from working with partner

A lesbian police sergeant who was not allowed to work on the same shift as her girlfriend has accused her police force of institutional homophobia in a tribunal.

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1 day to go for Lesbilicious Comedy

A final reminder about Lesbilicious Comedy: it’s tomorrow!

Lesbilicious Comedy is an irregular night of comedy for lesbian/bisexual women and their friends in Newcastle upon Tyne. Starring at the event on 29 October 2009 will be Shazia Mirza, Maureen Younger and Rosie Wilby.

Some tickets may be available on the door but these nights have a tendency to sell out so arrive early. For more information go to the Lesbilicious Comedy page.

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New Tegan and Sara album released

Tegan and Sara’s new album Sainthood is released today (27 Oct 2009).

Sainthood is Tegan and Sara’s sixth full-length album, and the first on which they have written lyrics together. They used the concept of sainthood, inspired by a Leonard Cohen song, as a basis for songs of devotion and longing.

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Gay Tourist Office opens in London

The Gay Tourist Centre has opened in London. The centre is the first of it’s kind and is dedicated to providing visitors with LGBT related information about the city.

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New lesbian social networking site

Founder of Little Ms Tees, Rhoda McClure, has launched a new lesbian social networking site. The site is called LESBOOK and has over 800 members.

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Cast announced for new BBC lesbian drama

The BBC has announced the cast for its new lesbian drama, Lip Service, which is to be broadcast early next year.

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Pope reaches out to conservative Anglicans

Pope Benedict XVI has created a new structure within the Catholic Church to accommodate conservative Anglicans who want to covert.

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BBC3′s jokes about Lindsay Lohan and lesbians found to be “crude and offensive”

A BBC 3 programme which included derrogatory comments about Lindsay Lohan and Sam Ronson breached the BBC’s editorial standards, according to the Trust’s Editorial Standards Committee (ESC).

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BBC costume drama for ‘England’s first lesbian’

The BBC is creating a one-off costume drama based on the life of Anne Lister, dubbed ‘the first modern lesbian’ by historians.

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London hate crime up 18%

The number of homophobic hate crimes in London have increased by almost a fifth over the last year, according to the latest police figures.

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Advertisers flee Daily Mail in Jan Moir controversy

The Daily Mail page featuring Jan Moir’s homophobic rant about Stephen Gately’s death has lost almost all its adverts as advertisers seek to distance themselves from the controversy.

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Fury at Daily Mail’s “loathsome” attack on Stephen Gately

A homophobic rant about the recent death of Stephen Gately published in today’s Daily Mail has provoked anger of thousands of Twitter and Facebook users and caused the Press Complaints Commission website to crash.

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1 day left to enter book competition

You have just 26 hours left to enter our competition to win a copy of Jeanette Winterson’s Oranges Are Not The Only Fruit.

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3 days left for £10 Lesbilicious Comedy tickets

If you’re planning to come to Lesbilicious Comedy in Newcastle and haven’t booked your ticket then you better hurry – the £10 early bird discount ends on Monday 19 October 2009.

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7 in 10 bisexual women not out at work

70% of bisexual women and 78% of bisexual men don’t feel they can be open about their sexuality in the workplace, compared to 30% of gay men and women, according to a major new survey.

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Screenwriters Festival to tackle LGBT representation

The screenwriters responsible for the gay storylines and characters in Coronation Street, Sugar Rush and Skins will be talking about how to present LGBT on TV later this month at the International Screenwriters’ Festival.

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“I will end ‘don’t ask, don’t tell’ – Obama

Barack Obama has repeated his pledge to end the ban on openly gay people in the military, but he has still not given details of exactly when or how the ban will be overturned.

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Stephen Gately dies on holiday

Stephen Gately from boyband Boyzone died on Saturday. Police have said there were no signs of suspicious circumstances.

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“We need a queer-friendly dance party” – interview with Team Gina

Team Gina is an electroqueer spandex-wearing synchronised robot-dancing phenomena – not to mention one of The Advocate’s ‘top 5 queer groups to look out for’.

We spoke to the two fierce femmes of Team Gina, Gina Bling and Gina Genius, about rapping, butches and matching tattoos.

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Win Oranges Are Not The Only Fruit

Jeanette Winterson’s classic tale of growing up gay in a deeply religious environment is 25 years old next year. Celebrate by winning one of 3 copies of Oranges are Not the Only Fruit.

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Mythical Swedish lesbian city ‘is myth’

Swedish officials have been forced to make a statement denying the existence of a secret city of 25,000 lesbians.

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‘Polish group not homophobic’ – David Cameron

Conservative Party leader David Cameron says he doesn’t believe the party’s new partners in Europe are homophobic.

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Protests dent Tory gay pride in Manchester

Over 30 people gathered last night to protest against the Conservative Party’s ‘Conference Pride’, a gay pride party held in the centre of Manchester’s gay village.

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Hilary Mantel wins Booker Prize

Sarah Waters has been denied the Man Booker Prize for the third year running.

Waters’ novel The Little Stranger was shortlisted but lost out last night to Hilary Mantel’s Wolf Hall.

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Eddie Izzard, Stephen Fry and Stonewall slam Tory support of homophobes

Stonewall chief executive Ben Summerskill has cancelled his appearance as star speaker at tonight’s Conservative Party event in Manchester’s gay village in protest at the presence of extremist homophobic MEPs at the Conservative conference.

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Curious and Curiouser: 5 reasons to give straight girls a break

These days, every straight girl worth her salt has dabbled in a bit of same-sex exploration, writes Kaite Welsh.

Long before Katy Perry kissed a girl and liked it, Cindy Crawford was straddling kd lang on the cover of Vanity Fair. And whilst ‘I Kissed a Girl’ has become the kareoke choice de jour of the lesbian population, mention Perry – or Britney and Madonna locking lips – and you’re met with a collective eye-roll.

Sometimes it seems as though straight girls are the kryptonite for any normally sane lesbian – pretty, but liable to turn you into an angry, quivering wreck. In the interests of bridging the divide between us and our straight-but-not-narrow sisters, here are 5 reasons we should give straight girls a break.

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Domestic partnerships recognised in Nevada

From 1 Oct 2009 same-sex couples will be able to register as ‘domestic partners’ in the US state of Nevada.

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Adoptive gay parents ‘no different’ to straight parents

Adopted children with gay parents grow up just as happy and health as those with straight parents, according to a new study.

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“Sorry girls, I’m not a lesbian” – La Roux

La Roux singer Elly Jackson has said she is sick of getting bras thrown at by lesbian fans.

In an interview with Heat magazine, 21-year-old Jackson said she always knew she would have a large lesbian following, but she wished they were just interested in her music and nothing more.

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Column: Bi the way

‘A friend in need is a friend indeed’… something that was drummed into me as a kid.

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Job losses and £45k debt misery for Brighton Pride

Brighton Pride has been forced to axe jobs as it struggles to pay a £50,000 deficit from this year’s event.

One of the three full-time members of staff is to be made redundant, while the other two employees are to work reduced hours.

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Casting begins for The Real L Word

Are you a real-life Bette? A lady-killing Shane? Reality TV show which aims to be “the real L Word” is calling for real-life Los Angeles lesbians to audition to be on the show.

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New parenting rights for Scottish gay couples

Scottish same-sex couples hoping to adopt or foster have equal rights with straight couples from today (28 September 2009).

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Graham Norton criticised for lesbian comment

The BBC has reprimanded Graham Norton for making an offensive comment about lesbians.
A viewer complained to the BBC that Norton had reinforced a negative stereotype about lesbians’ appearance.

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Life as a lesbian teacher

Being gay in school is hard enough for the pupils, but what about the teachers? Lesbian schoolteacher Eddie Acorn Edmondson looks at the issue.

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Stonewall Awards shortlist announced

Beth Ditto, Boyzone and Carol Ann Duffy are amongst the celebrities shortlisted in Stonewall’s 2009 Awards ceremony.

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1 in 5 US civil servants discriminated against

The average US Government LGBT employee earns 8-29% less than his/her heterosexual colleagues, according to a new report on discrimination against LGBT people in the public sector.

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LGBT teenagers suffer more from eating disorders

Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) teenagers are more likely to binge eat and/or suffer from bullimia, according to a major new US study.

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Jail for South African ‘corrective rapist’

A man was today jailed for life for his part in the gang-rape and murder of a lesbian athlete in South Africa.

Eudy Simelane, an international footballer, was killed last year in a spate of ‘corrective rapes’ against lesbians in the country.

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Tegan and Sara tour UK and Europe

Tegan and Sara have announced the dates for their November 2009 European tour. The tour promotes the duo’s new 13-track album, called Sainthood.

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Manchester’s Canal Street to be pedestrianised

Sections of Manchester’s gay village will be traffic-free on Friday and Saturday nights as part of a pilot scheme running in October 2009.

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“I won’t marry until gay people can marry” -Charlize Theron

Actress Charlize Theron has said she will not consider marrying her boyfriend of eight years until gay people can also legally marry in the USA.

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Estate agents “violated” lesbian couple

An estate agent firm which publicly outed a lesbian couple who were trying to sell their house has been reprimanded by the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS).

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9 tips for staying friends with your ex

A stranger might be a friend you haven’t met yet, but in lesbian circles a stranger is a friend you haven’t slept with yet. Slept with, become girlfriends with, broken up with and then become friends with again.

But is it really so easy to switch being girlfriends to exgirlfriends to just friends? Kaite Welsh doesn’t promise it’ll be easy, but she does think it’s possible. Here are her 9 tips for staying friends with your ex:

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FA to show anti-homophobia film at matches

The head of the UK Football Association (FA) has promised that challenging homophobia at football matches will be a priority in 2010.

Key to the drive to challenging homophobia on the pitch and in the terraces will be a short film with an anti-homophobia message which will be broadcast at matches.

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Column: Confessions of a Serial Monogamer

I had a dream I bumped into an ex who I hadn’t seen, or had any contact with, for over two years. The next day, I actually bumped into her in a sea of thousands of people. Does this make me psychic?

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‘Love your inner lesbian’ health campaign launched

Lesbian and bisexual women are being encouraged to take better care of their mental and physical health with a new poster campaign from Stonewall and the Department of Health.

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Caster Semenya on suicide watch

South African runner Caster Semenya “is like a raped person”, following world-wide speculation about whether she is male or female, according to the chair of South Africa’s sports committee.