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Gay climber planned to raise LGBT+ visibility – Instead, he is in lockdown

Dastan Kasmamytov with the Pink Summits team on top of Mount Elbrus, in September 2018. Handout courtesy of Dastan Kasmamytov

Dastan Kasmamytov planned to climb Mont Blanc next month, in a bid to become the first Central Asian to scale the world’s tallest summits. Instead, he is in lockdown with his family, who once took him to a magician to try to ‘cure’ him of being gay.

The new coronavirus has put Kasmamytov’s dream of planting a rainbow flag on nine of the world’s highest peaks on hold for now. But he still hopes to summit the Franco-Italian mountain in August, for both LGBT+ visibility, and his native Kyrgyzstan. Continue Reading »

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Success! Digital Pride Hackathon 2020 – Rise of the Pride Polyphony

The first Digital Pride Hackathon, organised by Unicorns in Tech, in partnership with other proud organisations, took place between May 15th and 17th 2020. It was organised to coincide with IDAHOBIT (International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia, Interphobia and Transphobia), and bring the LGBT+ community together, to tackle the current challenges faced around the world.

Bringing more than 70 participants together, the hackathon saw ten teams working on different projects, and aiming to bring the global LGBT+ community together, to support and help each other. Continue Reading »

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BeLonG To: The Day We Said ‘Yes’

Can you recall those feelings of anticipation, excitement, fear, and hope, five years ago, as the nation went to the polling stations, to vote on Marriage Equality?

Can you also remember that magical feeling when 62% of Ireland said YES!

Moninne Griffith, of BeLonG To, says she “will never forget that moment, and many special moments during the campaign.

One of these moments was when Former President of Ireland, Dr Mary McAleese, joined the BeLonG To YES campaign, and voiced her support for a Yes vote”. Continue Reading »

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Netflix : Queer Eye 5 – Get Your Tissues Ready – Premiere on 5 June

Get your tissues ready, hennies!

Queer Eye is back for Season 5 on 5 June

The Fab 5 are heading to the City of Brotherly Love to transform 10 new heroes.
It’s been fifteen years since the Emmy Award-winning series Queer Eye for the Straight Guy revolutionised reality television. The series returns to Netflix, and is going global, introducing audiences around the world to a modern aesthetic, diverse perspectives, and a brand new Fab Five:

Antoni Porowski (Food & Wine),Bobby Berk (Interior Design), Karamo Brown (Culture), Jonathan Van Ness (Grooming) and Tan France (Fashion).

This season the Fab Five head to historic Philadelphia to make over a new cast of everyday heroes, from a hardworking DJ to a struggling dog groomer.
The Fab Five forge relationships with men and women from a wide array of backgrounds and beliefs often contrary to their own, touching on everything from LGBTQ rights and social commentary to how to make the best farm-to-table guacamole and more! Queer Eye for the Straight Guy creator David Collins (Scout Productions) serves as executive producer for the new series, along with producing partners Michael Williams and Rob Eric. David Eilenberg also serves as an executive producer in association with ITV Entertainment.

Visit Queer Eye on Netflix.

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ZEROPUNKT release digital single in aid of St Vincent De Paul

Dublin improvisers, Zeropunkt, are releasing a digital single in aid of St. Vincent de Paul’s efforts to deal with fallout from COVID 19. The spontaneously composed guitar, bass, and drums piece, entitled German Windows, is drawn from their forthcoming album Clap Your Hands Say No, which will appear in Summer 2020. The track is available for a limited time only, and can be downloaded on Bandcamp on a name-your-price basis, until the 21st of June. 
Zeropunkt is: Fergus Cullen: saxophones, guitars, voice, keys, synthesizer, clarinet, piano, flutes; Jamie Davis: drums, percussion, saxophone; Damien Lennon: bass, effects.
“Located between mystical horror, soundtrack aping, free jazz and no wave fumbling, such experiments in letting go and embracing one’s inner demon seem always to yield intensely psychedelic results, just like Zeropunkt on Future Perfect Continuous.” (The Quietus)
Video – Live in Guerilla Sounds, North Strand, Dublin:

You can find the track here:
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Coronavirus restrictions amplify health risks to LGBT+ people with HIV

Image: womenshealth.gov

It started with headaches then came nausea and diarrhea. Within two weeks, gay Ugandan barber, Eric, had became so weak without his HIV medication he could not walk, and had to be hospitalised.

“I was in the hospital for a week and four days. I nearly lost my life,” said Eric, 26, by phone from his village in Ntungamo district in western Uganda. Continue Reading »

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This Way Out: Pride-in-Place + Irish Ayes + global LGBTQ news!

THIS WAY OUT  www.thiswayout.org

The international LGBT radio magazine
Program #1,677 distributed on 05/18/20
(Hosted this week by Greg Gordon and produced with Lucia Chappelle)
Pride goes virtual to overcome COVID-19 lockdowns;
Irish marriage equality still smiles on its fifth anniversary;
Reports reveal European queer rights decay, gay Seoul nightspots get
blamed for a COVID-19 comeback, Brazil’s Supreme Court frees gay and bi
men to donate blood, the ‘Uganda 19’ homeless queer youth shelter
lockdown detainees get a surprise release, and more global LGBTQ news!
– In ‘NewsWrap’: 
Two alarming surveys released this week – from the European Union Fundamental Rights Agency, and from the European branch of the global queer rights group ILGA – report an alarming stagnation or deterioration of LGBTQ rights on the continent in the past year … a resurgence of COVID-19 traced to nightspots in Seoul popular with the queer community have fuelled a surge of homophobia in South Korean mainstream and social media …

Continue Reading »