Judge who refused to marry same-sex couples suspended without pay

Judge who refused to marry same-sex couples suspended without pay

Judge Vance Day A judge who employed a secret scheme to avoid marrying same-sex couples has been suspended without pay.

Judge Vance Day of Salem, who was a Marion County Circuit Court judge, was found guilty of “wilful misconduct” by the Oregon Supreme Court.

The judge, a former chairman of the Republican Party in Oregon, had come under fire in 2015 when he ordered staff to secretly redirect same-sex couples wanting to marry to other judges to solemnise marriages.

Day later claimed the decision not to perform the marriages was based “deeply-held religious beliefs”, but initially acted to conceal his policy from the public and the legal system.

The state Supreme Court suspended the judge for three years without pay – adding that a “lengthy suspension” is required “to preserve public confidence in the integrity and impartiality of the judiciary.” The ruling covered not only his gay wedding order, but also unrelated allegations of “willful misstatements” to investigators and “exceptionally serious misconduct” related to cases.

The court wrote: “Before [a court ruling that legalised same-sex marriage], respondent had made himself available to solemnise marriages.“After that ruling, he told his staff that, upon receiving any marriage request, they should check for any personal gender information […]

Love, Simon’s Nick Robinson said his brother came out as gay during filming

Love, Simon’s Nick Robinson said his brother came out as gay during filming

Nick Robinson’s brother came out as gay when he was filming Love, Simon, the actor revealed.

Speaking about filming the movie on The Ellen Show , the actor said that after he played a teen struggling with his sexual orientation, his brother decided to tell him that he was in fact gay.

“He came out around the same time we started filming, yeah. I think that he had been dealing with this for a long time and the timing was coincidental, but one of the best things that came out of this movie was being able to talk to him,” he regaled. “I think that’s the strength of a film like this is that it starts conversations, and I hope it can do that for more people and start a conversation that might not have been there.”

As a straight man playing a gay man in the role, the actor discussed the responsibility of taking a part when he is heterosexual.

“It was a conversation with Greg [Berlanti], our director, we went back and forth and we talked about it,” he said,

“But I really think that with a project like this, especially today, there’s been so much progress in the last 20 years, […]

This new campaign is aiming to increase HIV testing in black gay men

This new campaign is aiming to increase HIV testing in black gay men

“This campaign speaks to us. The imagery is beautiful and it shows black men being loving, caring and compassionate with each other. It reflects the community as it really is.”

GMFA have launched a groundbreaking new campaign aiming to increase HIV testing amongst black gay men.

The campaign – titled Me. Him. Us – was developed by BAME (Black and Minority Ethnics) to increase their representation in public health campaigns.

Ian Howley, Chief Executive of HERO – Health Equality and Rights Organisation, said: “Over the last few years, HERO has been working close with the BAME LGBT+ community. One of the issues that kept on coming up was the lack of representation, especially in mass media health promotion campaigns.

“At HERO we listened and acted on this feedback. What people see is completely developed by BAME gay and bisexual men for BAME gay and bisexual men. From the concept, to the models, to the design, all parts of this campaign came from a grass roots level.” Co-editor of BlackoutUK and campaign advisor, Marc Thompson, explained: “Most of health professionals don’t like to admit it, but reflecting diverse audiences can be challenging for them. It‘s difficult, especially if you don’t come from those […]

Volunteer Vets Are Making Sure Homeless Dogs Get The Care They Need

Volunteer Vets Are Making Sure Homeless Dogs Get The Care They Need

As a homeless man sleeping rough in London, Sam* had no way of paying for the essential products his beloved dog needed to be happy and healthy. “I used to shoplift for my dog’s food and have a criminal record for stealing it. I don’t do that any more,” he says.

Sam, whose name has been changed to protect his identity, is just one of the hundreds of homeless people who’ve been helped by DOTS (Dogs On The Streets) London , which provides free food, collars, leads, blankets, dog coats and more to pups without a permanent roof over their head. DOTS also has a dedicated team of voluntary vets and pet groomers who provide free weekly check-ups and emergency care for those who need it.

The London-based charity is celebrating its one-year anniversary this week after founder Michelle Clark set up the first help station in 2017. Today, DOTS runs weekly stalls at King’s Cross and The Strand and has mobile help vans that travel across the capital proving 24/7 support to the homeless community and their pets. For many homeless people, their dogs are their closest companions – the ones who show them unconditional love through difficult times and […]

No, Brexit Is Not A Distraction From NHS or Housing Crises

No, Brexit Is Not A Distraction From NHS or Housing Crises

kev303 via Getty Images According to John Rentoul, writing in The Independent at the weekend: “Brexit is distracting the centre of Government – No 10, the Cabinet Office and the Treasury – from attending to the pressing problems facing the country.” You can see his point. The demands exerted by negotiating a Brexit deal in Brussels that neither party wants, while fending off a Remainer-dominated parliament in London, is hardly conducive to solving big and worsening domestic problems.

He is rightly sceptical about the government’s ambitions to build the millions of houses the country needs; and who isn’t outraged that 22,800 elective operations were cancelled in England as a consequence of ‘winter pressures’? But neither is the fault of Brexit. They are just the latest instalments in a long line of policy failures that existed long before that delicious jolt to the system intruded on the banal politics that existed before 23 June 2016. Does he really think that government would have got its trowel out by now and built the 250,000 homes a year it has been promising? Or that it would have got its act together and solved the social care crisis, and in turn solved one of […]

I Met An Elderly Lady On The Bus Who Was Looking For Noise. It Taught Me A Lot About Loneliness

I Met An Elderly Lady On The Bus Who Was Looking For Noise. It Taught Me A Lot About Loneliness

Bloomberg via Getty Images Ever been brought to tears on your commute? (No, delays on the Overground or missing your bus do not count.)

Last week, a journey home was rather emotional. To the point where I actually spent the rest of my evening wanting to turn back time and change my actions. Here’s why:

Picture the scene. I’m on route to a doctor’s appointment, on a bus that seemed to be hit with a severe case of red light syndrome. The anxiety of my looming appointment, teamed with the rocking back and forth consequent to the bus driver’s hesitant foot – and its constant misjudgement of whether to accelerate or break – meant that I was not having the most comfortable of rides.

An older lady sat beside me on the 27 heading towards Camden Town. She was elegantly dressed, her make up picture perfect and her hands decorated with long, black lace gloves. With my eyes transfixed on her adorned arms, she lowered herself on the seat next to me with her walking stick. With barely two seconds passing of her being my new neighbour, she turned to me and said:

“Excuse me dear, I’m looking for a cinema. Can you […]

Refugees Like Me Are Going Without Food To Pay The Legal Costs Of Reuniting With Family

Refugees Like Me Are Going Without Food To Pay The Legal Costs Of Reuniting With Family

British Red Cross This morning I woke up crying at 5am – I dreamt that my family were still in Cameroon.

Today I am lucky to have my wife and five children safely in the UK with me, but for a long time this wasn’t the case.

My family originates from Cameroon in central Africa. I worked as a tailor and my wife was a primary school teacher. But one day I spoke out against the elected government and was persecuted as a result. I had no choice but to flee my home, leaving behind my pregnant wife and children.

I left Cameroon on the 10th November 2014 and was granted refugee status in March 2016, almost 18 months after leaving my family.

In the UK, when someone is granted protection as a refugee, they have a legal right to be reunited with their family. But in 2012, legal aid was removed in the UK, meaning that refugees like me no longer have access to free legal support to navigate the complex family reunion process. Instead I had to sacrifice everything to fund this myself. I lived on absolute minimum subsistence. I received second hand clothes from charity, I took food handouts to […]

Walthamstow shooting: Man ‘sitting in car’ murdered

Walthamstow shooting: Man 'sitting in car' murdered

The victim was shot in Forest Road and died on the way to hospital A 20-year-old man has been shot dead in north-east London.

The victim is thought to have been sitting in a car in Forest Road, Walthamstow, at about 21:30 GMT on Wednesday when he was approached by a number of people.

He was shot and died about an hour later while being taken to hospital. His next-of-kin have been informed.

Det Ch Insp Andrew Packer said the killing had "left his family and friends devastated".

He added: "We are doing everything we can to find the culprits. I would urge all witnesses and those with information to contact police."

An air ambulance also attended the scene and medics performed first aid before transporting the victim to hospital.Formal identification has yet to take place and no arrests have been made.

Mariam Moustafa: Egyptian teen’s Nottingham death sparks anger

Mariam Moustafa: Egyptian teen's Nottingham death sparks anger

Mariam Moustafa, 18, was an engineering student at Nottingham College Police are keeping "an open mind" about whether an attack on an Egyptian student that sparked outrage in her home country was racially motivated.

Mariam Moustafa, 18, died on Wednesday after being attacked by a group in Nottingham on 20 February.

The hashtag "Mariam’s rights will not be lost" has been trending in Egypt.

Egypt’s prosecutor-general has requested information about the probe into her death by British officials, according to BBC Monitoring.

Nottinghamshire Police said in a statement: "At this time, from our investigation, there is no information to suggest that the assault was motivated by hate but we continue to keep an open mind."

Before Miss Moustafa’s death, police arrested a 17-year-old girl on suspicion of assault occasioning grievous bodily harm. She was released on conditional bail. Police said the attack took place in Parliament Street in Nottingham Miss Moustafa’s uncle told the BBC a group of about 10 girls had started beating his niece at the Intu Victoria Centre in Nottingham, so she ran to get on a bus.The girls then followed her on to the bus, he said, and kept beating her until she passed out and a man intervened to […]

Baby Charities Express ‘Extreme Concern’ Over Increased Infant Death Rates In England And Wales

Baby Charities Express 'Extreme Concern' Over Increased Infant Death Rates In England And Wales

Baby charities have spoken of their “extreme concern” that the number of babies who died within their first 28 days of life has increased year on year in England and Wales. The rate rose from 2.6 neonatal (newborn) deaths per 1,000 births in 2015 to 2.7 for every 1,000 births in 2016, the Office for National Statistics revealed.

The infant mortality rate – deaths within the first year of a child’s life – also rose, from 3.7 to 3.8 per 1,000 live births from 2015 to 2016. This is the second year in a row the statistic has increased. “These increases can be attributed to many risk factors, such as the mother’s country of birth, mother’s age at birth of child, birthweight and the parents’ socioeconomic status,” an ONS spokesperson said .

Bliss and Tamba (Twins and Multiple Births Association) are now calling for NHS England’s Neonatal Critical Care Transformation Programme Review to be given urgent attention. “It is deeply concerning to see a rise in infant mortality rates for the second year running,” said Caroline Lee-Davey, chief executive of Bliss. “Research has highlighted there are significant variations in mortality rates across the country, meaning there is much more to […]