Canada will take in gay refugees from Syria – Pink News

Nick Duffy 24th November 2015, 4:52 PM
Canada’s PM Justin Trudeau has pledged to open Canada’s doors to refugees in need.  Canada’s PM Justin Trudeau has pledged to open Canada’s doors to refugees in need.
Canada’s new government has made specific provisions to take in gay refugees – but single straight men won’t be allowed.
The news comes as the country’s new Liberal government sets out its commitments to resettlement amid the Syria crisis.

The party has pledged to accept 25,000 Syrian refugees – and confirmed today the majority of refugees will be women, children and families.
Amid security concerns, the country does not plan to accept unaccompanied males – but it will make an exception for gay people, who face persecution in Syria from both the government and the terrorist group known as Islamic State.
ISIS has staged hundreds of public executions for men accused of homosexuality, though they provide little proof the men are actually gay.
The Ottowa Citizen reports: “The government is aware that gays could be persecuted, and therefore plans to include them in the selection process aimed at rescuing some of the region’s most vulnerable refugees.”
The pledge to accept refugees was a cornerstone of the commitments by new PM Justin Trudeau. The keen LGBT ally also demonstrated his commitment to equality by naming a diverse, gender-balanced cabinet.
In the UK, Labour MP Mary Creagh has previously called for the government’s focus on resettling refugees from Syria to include LGBT people.
Writing for PinkNews, she said: “Countries like the UK should be doing more to assist LGBTI refugees in particular.
“In this country we pride ourselves on the progress we have made on sexual equality. We should be reaching out to assist those being persecuted for their sexuality or gender orientation abroad.

Modern Family’s Reid Ewing Comes Out as Gay After Plastic Surgery Addiction Essay: “I Was Never In”

November 23, 2015 @ 02:16 PM / By Rachel McRady

Credit: Paul Archuleta/FilmMagic
Bombshell No. 2 or NBD? Last week Modern Family actor Reid Ewing made a painfully honest confession during a blog for The Huffington Post. The sitcom star, who plays Sarah Hyland’s character’s ex-boyfriend Dylan on the series, opened up about his struggle with body dysmorphia and his addiction to plastic surgery. But over the weekend, fans also learned that Ewing, 27, is gay.

Gay Celebrities’ Coming Out Stories
“Saw Eugene Bata on @GMA in the Body Dysmorphia segment connected to my article and I just want to say he is hot af,” the actor tweeted, prompting a fan to write, “@media_reid Did you also just out yourself?”

Ewing replied, ”@MichaelJMapes I was never in.”

It’s clear that Ewing has no problem being honest about his private life. His candid essay shared his fears and insecurities; in one passage he wrote, “I genuinely believed if I had one procedure I would suddenly look like Brad Pitt… For the next couple of years, I would get several more procedures with two other doctors. Each procedure would cause a new problem that I would have to fix with another procedure.”

Reid Ewing in Modern Family.
Reid Ewing in Modern Family. Eric McCandless/ABC via Getty Images
For his part, Ewing was not pleased that fans were so shocked by his sexuality. On Monday, Nov. 23, he posted a GIF of an unimpressed Bea Arthur as Dorothy on Golden Girls, tweeting, “Writes a cosmetic surgery article, people care more that I’m gay..”

Sarah Hyland and Reid Ewing in Modern Family in 2011.
Sarah Hyland and Reid Ewing in Modern Family in 2011. Rick Rowell / ABC via Getty Images
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Jackie Biskupski Becomes First Openly Gay Mayor of Salt Lake City by THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

NEWS NOV 18 2015, 6:35 AM ET

SALT LAKE CITY — Former Utah lawmaker Jackie Biskupski on Tuesday became the first openly gay mayor of Salt Lake City, the capital of the conservative state where the Mormon church and a small town judge delivered setbacks last week to the LGBT community.

The victory by Biskupski marked another milestone for LGBT people in Utah who have made major strides in recent years.

Former Utah lawmaker Jackie Biskupski poses for photograph after becoming mayor of Salt Lake City. Rick Bowmer / AP
“Today is not just about making history,” Biskupski said. “It is about people. It is about affecting change.”

Her supporters cheered when the results were read at an elections canvass meeting.

Two-term incumbent Ralph Becker showed no reaction and later congratulated Biskupski and vowed to work with her to ensure a smooth transition.

Official election results showed Biskupski won 52 percent of the votes to defeat Becker.

“Serving as mayor of Salt Lake City has been the richest working experience of my life,” Becker told reporters.

Salt Lake City voters also elected Derek Kitchen, who became the second gay member of the City Council.

He and his husband, Moudi Sbeity, were one of three couples who sued to overturn the state’s same-sex marriage ban.

Biskupski takes over after progress on gay rights was temporarily marred in recent weeks when a judge ordered a foster child to be removed from a lesbian couple and placed with a heterosexual couple. The judge cited the child’s well-being as the reason for his order.

The ruling set off a firestorm around the state and nation. The judge quickly reversed his decision and took himself off the case.

Days earlier, the Salt Lake City-based Mormon church issued new rules targeting gay members and their children, prompting widespread backlash. The new policy bans baptisms for children of gay parents until the kids turn 18 and disavow same-sex relationships.

Biskupski is not a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and said she hopes the faith reconsiders the policy. She said one of her goals as mayor is to meet with church leaders and discuss the new rules.

Image: Jackie Biskupski, Sen. Jim Dabakis
Former Utah lawmaker Jackie Biskupski receives a hug from Democratic state Sen. Jim Dabakis after she was elected Salt Lake City’s first openly gay mayor. Rick Bowmer / AP
Biskupski declined to discuss the church policy further Tuesday, saying she wanted to meet with Mormon officials first.

Earlier this year, the church endorsed a statewide anti-discrimination law that protected gay and transgender people from discrimination in housing and the workplace.

It’s a contrast from 1998, when Biskupski became Utah’s first openly gay lawmaker and some of her colleagues in the heavily Mormon and conservative Legislature wouldn’t shake her hand.

Asked about her win in light of the recent controversies, Biskupski said, “It’s 2015, and we’ve come a long way from, gosh, when I first got elected.”

Regarding the foster child case, Biskupski said she was proud of Utah’s Republican governor for criticizing the action by the judge. She called the ruling “so old and rhetorical.”

LGBT issues didn’t define the tight race between Biskupski and Becker.

Salt Lake City is a liberal island in the state where no Republican has been elected mayor in four decades. Gay rights group Equality Utah endorsed both Becker and Biskupski.

Becker, 63, has been called an ally of the LGBT community, helping pass a 2009 city anti-discrimination ordinance. He also officiated dozens of the first gay marriages in 2013 in the hours after a surprising ruling overturned Utah’s same sex marriage ban.