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IGLTA eNewsletter

Small business spotlight

In this recurring feature, we showcase small business members of our association. Magnet Co. opened its doors in 2009 seeking to fill a void in the market for expert advice and planning for gay travel to Japan; Ride the Ducks is a fun family tour based in San Francisco that covers land and bay in amphibious vehicles.

6 May 2015 08:57:12 CDT

Join us at Europe's largest free ticketed festival

The BBC Radio 1's Big Weekend in Norwich, U.K., will welcome over 50,000 lucky people to see some of the planet's most exciting musicians. IGLTA members are welcomed to send marketing pieces at no charge for distribution from the made stand during the festival. To participate, contact for shipping and deadline details. Visit the BBC's Big Weekend homepage for more information about the event.

6 May 2015 08:57:12 CDT

Gay rights activists allowed to march in Russian May Day parade

Despite a federal anti-gay law, LGBT rights activists and allies were allowed recently to march in a May Day parade in Russia. The parade took place in St. Petersburg on 1 May, and featured a rainbow column to celebrate the International Workers' Day. According to reports, over 90,000 people attended, around 600 of them from the LGBT column.

6 May 2015 08:57:12 CDT

Supreme Court arguments reveal gains of gay rights movement

As the Supreme Court confronted the constitutionality of same sex marriages in oral arguments recently, one thing was clear: win or lose, the gay rights movement has made huge inroads within the law over the past twenty years. After years of incremental gains, the 2003 case, Lawrence v. Texas, served as seminal moment in the Supreme Court's jurisprudence in the area of gay rights.

6 May 2015 08:57:12 CDT

Nepal's earthquake shines an unexpected spotlight on gay rights in Israel

When a deadly earthquake struck Nepal recently, killing thousands and leaving millions displaced, an Israeli couple more than 3,000 miles away felt like their world would come crashing down too. They couldn’t get in touch with their Indian surrogate, Sanju, eight months pregnant with their twins in Kathmandu. The expectant fathers feared the worst. Yoav Elani and his partner of 14 years, Moran Ben-Dror, have long dreamed of the day they would become fathers. But Israel greatly restricts gay couples from adopting or using Israeli surrogates, pushing many hopeful parents to seek other options abroad.

6 May 2015 08:57:12 CDT

Japan's LGBT community gains recognition

Tokyo's LGBT community marched in the annual Tokyo Rainbow Pride on 26 April to raise awareness for social acceptance. The estimated three thousand participants in the parade departed from Yoyogi Park and traversed various parts of Shibuya Ward. This year they not only celebrated the 20th anniversary of the Tokyo pride events, but also the passing of a same-sex partnership registration ordinance in Shibuya Ward in March, something that is considered to be a big step towards official recognition of LGBT rights.

6 May 2015 08:57:12 CDT

Gay Muslim risks death filming secret documentary on pilgrimage to Mecca

A new documentary called A Sinner in Mecca tells the story of gay Muslim filmmaker Parvez Sharma as he does what more than 15 million other Muslims do annually — travel to Mecca, Islam's holiest city. But as a gay man, Sharma's journey is fraught with peril — homosexuality can be punishable by death in Saudi Arabia.

6 May 2015 08:57:12 CDT

Ireland archbishop raises concerns about yes vote in gay marriage poll

The leader of Ireland's Catholics has warned that if the Republic endorses gay marriage in the forthcoming referendum, religious organizations could face legal action for refusing to marry same-sex couples in their churches. Ireland is the first country in the world to hold a referendum to legalize gay marriages. The vote takes place on 22 May.

6 May 2015 08:57:12 CDT

The newest evolution of Puerto Vallarta Pride

Puerto Vallarta, Mexico's, LGBT friendliness has been one of the worst kept secrets for more than 50 years. In the 1960s, the Pacific coast city (then a village) first caught the eye of gay Hollywood, and LGBT travelers and expats have been spending their time in and around Banderas Bay ever since.

6 May 2015 08:57:12 CDT

Supreme Court rejects appeal on NJ gay conversion therapy ban

The Supreme Court has decided not to meddle with New Jersey's ban on gay conversion therapy. The high court denied to hear a case recently challenging the law Gov. Chris Christie passed in August 2013 prohibiting state licensed counselors from offering therapy services that try to change a minor's sexual orientation.

6 May 2015 08:57:12 CDT

LGBT students in Japan: Education Ministry asks schools to let transgender children use preferred bathroom

Japan's education ministry reportedly sent out a statement encouraging schools to increase their of support transgender students. The Japan Times reported that government officials instructed area education boards to allow children to use whichever bathrooms and locker rooms they feel most comfortable with. "It's a very important step," 28-year-old transgender male Mameta Endo told the Japan Times, adding that he experienced discrimination when he was in school.

6 May 2015 08:57:12 CDT