Tag Archives: Non-governmental organizations

Oscar winner Dustin Lance Black urged Britain to ban LGBT + conversion therapy | Instant News

LONDON, April 7 (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – Oscar-winning screenwriter and filmmaker Dustin Lance Black on Wednesday accused Britain of “neglecting the lives of queer people” by failing to fulfill a three-year promise to ban LGBT + conversion therapy.

The United Nations has called for the practice, which aims to change a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity, to be banned globally.

Brazil, Ecuador, Malta and Germany have adopted forms of national bans, while parts of Australia and Canada are considering restrictions and at least 20 US states ban them for minors.

Black – who has built a remarkable US sailing career from keeping track of LGBT + rights – said his adoptive homeland in Britain knew the risks of treatment but had not acted on it.

“This government ignores the lives of freaks,” the US screenwriter told the Thomson Reuters Foundation in a video call from her home in south London, which was shared with her husband British Olympic diver Tom Daley and their two-year-old son, Robbie Ray.

“There is no urgency from this government to protect LGBTQ people,” said the 46-year-old Oscar winner. “We keep hearing, ‘Soon, soon, soon’. Well, I’m sorry to tell this government that the ‘soon’ came and went years ago now. “

Former Prime Minister Theresa May vowed to ban conversion therapy by 2018.

But Black – who won the original screenplay Oscar for the 2008 film “Milk” about LGBT + activist Harvey Milk – noted that more than 1,000 days have passed.

“I feel fairly confident that if there is a therapy in the UK that targets heterosexual people to change something fundamental about them, and that the main outcomes of this therapy are depression, suicidal thoughts and suicide, then that therapy will be banned in 24 hours. -hours, “he said.

A 2019 survey by the suicide prevention group The Trevor Project found 42% of young LGBT Americans on conversion therapy reported a suicide attempt in the past year.

Nearly 700,000 Americans have undergone conversion therapy, half of whom are under 18, according to the UCLA Williams Institute.

A spokesman said the British government wanted to “stop conversion therapy” and would come up with a proposal soon.

Black, who is behind the hit ABC series “When We Rise” which charts LGBT + rights, says procrastination has had a “measurable” impact on British lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people. “The government itself has reviewed this matter and still hasn’t done anything,” he said. “They should care very little about LGBTQ people, our self-esteem, our self-confidence.”

In the 2018 National LGBT Survey, the UK government said nearly 2% of respondents had undergone conversion therapy and another 5% had been offered it. (Reported by Hugo Greenhalgh; Edited by Lyndsay Griffiths. Please pay tribute to the Thomson Reuters Foundation, the Thomson Reuters charity, covering the lives of people around the world who struggle to live free or fair. news.trust.org)


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UPDATE 1-Italy’s Benetton Group is suspending new orders from Myanmar suppliers | Instant News

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ROME, March 12 (Reuters) – Italy’s Benetton Group said on Friday it had immediately suspended all new orders from its suppliers in Myanmar over concerns over escalating violence in the Southeast Asian country following the ouster of Aung San Suu Kyi’s government last month.

Myanamar accounts for 2% of Benetton’s suppliers, according to the Italian group’s website.

“We express our deepest concern over what is happening in Myanmar,” the street clothing group said in a statement.

“This situation presents such problems, both in terms of security and freedom as well as violations of rights, so we decided to suspend all new orders.”

Myanmar activists held more rallies against the country’s junta on Friday, a day after rights groups said security forces killed 12 protesters.

More than 70 protesters have died since the coup, said the advocacy group Association of Assistance for Political Prisoners (AAPP).

Benetton said his move was intended to provide a “strong and tangible signal” in support of values ​​such as integration and nonviolence.

Earlier this week, Sweden’s H&M, the world’s second-largest fashion retailer, said it was shocked by the use of lethal force against protesters in Myanmar and that they had stopped placing orders in the country. (Reporting by Giulia Segreti in Rome and Elisa Anzolin in Milan; Editing by Valentina Za and Paul Simao)


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Brazil’s Congress will limit Bolsonaro’s populist spending | Instant News

BRASILIA, March 12 (Reuters) – Brazil’s right-wing president Jair Bolsonaro is likely to try to increase spending to shore up his popularity now that leftist Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva is back in the political fray, but Congress will rein in it, his deputy speaker said on Friday.

Congressman Marcelo Ramos is an ally of the government, but one who believes Congress has taken responsibility and will not allow any “fiscal adventures” ahead of next year’s elections, he told Reuters. (Reporting by Anthony Boadle and Maria Carolina Marcello)


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North America is seeing a drop in COVID-19 infections, a worrying surge in Brazil, PAHO said | Instant News

FILE PHOTOS: People using escalators after getting off the train at Luz station during the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak in Sao Paulo, Brazil March 4, 2021. REUTERS / Amanda Perobelli

BRASILIA (Reuters) – New COVID-19 cases continue to decline in North America, but in Latin America infections are still on the rise, especially in Brazil where the revival has led to record deaths every day, the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) warned on Wednesday. .

“We are concerned about the situation in Brazil. It provides a conscious reminder of the threat of resurrection, ”PAHO director Carissa Etienne said at a briefing. He said cases were increasing in nearly every Brazilian state.

Reporting by Anthony Boadle, Edited by Franklin Paul


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Waive the patents for the COVID vaccine to benefit poor countries, activists say | Instant News

GENEVA (Reuters) – Doctors Without Borders (MSF) staged a protest at the World Trade Organization on Thursday against what it says is the reluctance of the rich world to give up patents and allow more production of COVID-19 vaccines for poor countries.

Activists seeking to waive intellectual property rules unfurl a large sign reading “No Monopoly on COVID – Rich Countries Stop Blocking TRIPS Waivers” in a park next to the WTO headquarters on Lake Geneva.

They want the terms of the TRIPS agreement – Aspects of Intellectual Property Related to WTO Trade – to be replaced to allow generic or other manufacturers to make new products.

WTO member states are holding new talks next week on proposals by India and South Africa to override regulations for COVID-19 drugs and vaccines.

“If we have neglect, we will be able in a number of countries to increase production now, which will allow diagnostics, drugs and vaccines to get to where they are most needed,” Stephen Cornish, general director of MSF Switzerland, told Reuters at the WTO.

“At the moment we are seeing very few vaccines making it to the global South, and this is unacceptable in the world today,” he said.

About 100 countries are now supporting the campaign, Cornish added.

Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, director general of the World Health Organization (WHO), backed up the move in a tweet on Thursday: “If a temporary patent waiver cannot be issued now, during these unprecedented times, when is the right time?”

“Big Pharmacy” has rejected a proposal that would grant compulsory licensing overriding patent rules. Britain, Switzerland and the United States, which have strong domestic pharmaceutical industries, are against neglect.

“Rich countries, EU, US, Canada and Switzerland … are blocking that reduction. And they’re doing it in the name of profit and business and the status quo instead of putting people’s lives over profit, “Cornish said.

Globally, 265 million doses of vaccine have been given, with 80% in just 10 countries, WHO emergency expert Mike Ryan said on social media on Wednesday evening.

He welcomed the launch of the first COVID-19 vaccine this week through the COVAX facility which aims to deliver doses to low-income countries, starting in Ivory Coast.

Nearly 10 million doses have been given in more than 10 countries, he said, adding: “It is a big step forward in terms of at least starting the journey towards better vaccine distribution around the world.”

additional reporting by Stephanie Nebehay; Written by Stephanie Nebehay; edited by William Maclean


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