Sunday, 30 April 2017

Lovin Malta: WATCH: I'm Ben, I'm Two Years Old And I'm Making History

A Maltese boy's journey to a loving home
Chucky Bartolo March 2017

Little Ben is making history. He was the first child to be adopted by a Maltese same-sex couple Kris and Steve.

Ben also happens to have Down Syndrome.

Malta first met Ben eight months ago, after his father, Kris, posted a touching message on Facebook introducing him to the world, and thanking everyone for their support. But we now know that Ben's journey wasn't always easy, and he's overcome incredible odds to be the superstar he is today.

Sunday, 9 April 2017

MGRM & Gay Malta: Position Paper on HIV Prevention and Treatment Guidelines

Published by the Malta Gay Rights Movement (MGRM) and Gay Malta
April 2017

The information guidelines below have been formulated to provide information to Malta based Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, Intersex and Queer (LGBTIQ) sexually active individuals who wish to have access to adequate prevention or treatment for HIV.

In view of the paucity of actions so far, and the slow development of an adequate sexual health policy, the unfortunate and inevitable result is of an increase in sexual health related diseases, including HIV, which disproportionately impinge upon our community with those most at risk being men who have sex with men and trans sex workers. This important issue requires several fronts of action and these guidelines relate both to the access of effective prevention from HIV infection and also to better treatment for those individuals who are HIV positive.

Sunday, 2 April 2017

Attitude: Man Proposes to his Boyfriend with a little help from the NBA's Chigago Bulls - watch

This is one basketball game Jake Conrad and his boyfriend won't forget.

It was a slam dunk for Jake Conrad after American basketball team the Chicago Bulls helped him create an unforgettable proposal for boyfriend Michael Holtzman on Thursday (December 8).

The video, which has racked up over 800,000 views in four days, shows the Bull’s mascot Benny bringing Michael on stage as Jake prepares to pop the question.

The team’s cheerleaders dance, before creating an aisle for Jake to walk through. Armed with a candy Ring Pop, Jake then asks Michael to marry him.

Watch the video below to see Michael’s reaction…

Saturday, 1 April 2017

Independent: HIV self-test kits now available in local pharmacies

Helena GrechSaturday, 18 March 2017, 17:00

Self-testing HIV kits are now available in local pharmacies, Allied Rainbow Communities has announced.

The Malta Independent on Sunday had initially reported that the government, under Health Minister Chris Fearne, was in the procurement process of bringing HIV rapid testing kits to the GU clinic in Mater Dei Hospital, for free. The Ministry had also revealed when speaking to this newsroom that self-test HIV home kits will also be available in pharmacies, which has now been made a reality.

The self-test kits allow a person to be able to test for the disease at the comfort of their own home, without any prying eyes. It is a straightforward process that requires a small drop of blood, takes 15 minutes to get the results, and is 99.8 per cent accurate. The kit is known as the ‘Autotest VIH’.

HIV is a potentially life-threatening condition that works by damaging a person’s immune system, as it interferes with the body’s ability to fight the organisms that cause disease. It is primarily a sexually transmitted disease however drug users who share needles are also at risk. The body’s ability to fight disease is possible through what are known as ‘antibodies’, explaining why a blood test over a saliva swam is generally preferable.

It must be said that HIV has an incubation period, meaning that some time must pass between contracting HIV, and getting a positive read on a test.

The kits have been approved both by Malta and the EU.

In the recently adopted 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, EU member states resolved to end the AIDS epidemic by 2030. To achieve this it has set up a set of goals to be met by 2020:

“By 2020, 90% of all people living with HIV will know their HIV status.

“By 2020, 90% of all people with diagnosed HIV infection will receive sustained antiretroviral therapy.

“By 2020, 90% of all people receiving antiretroviral therapy will have viral suppression.”

Friday, 31 March 2017

Times: 63 change gender on their birth certificate

Monday, November 21, 2016, 19:34

Sixty-one persons have changed their gender on their birth certificate since March 2013, Civil Liberties Minister Helena Dalli told parliament today.

She was answering a question by Labour MP Godfrey Farrugia.

Thursday, 30 March 2017

Times: Gay men should be allowed to donate blood - Labour youths

Saturday, September 17, 2016, 16:43

The FZL addressing the news conference.

A lifetime ban on gay men from donating blood should be lifted and replaced by a 12-month deferral, the Labour Party youth forum has proposed.

Donating one’s blood is an act of generosity and of civic responsibility that should not be conditioned by sexual orientation, the Forum Żgħażagh Laburisti (FŻL) told a news conference while launching its campaign ‘We All Have the Same Blood’.

Wednesday, 29 March 2017

Times: Transgender policy for prisons launched

Thursday, August 18, 2016, 11:08

Transgender prisoners are to start being assigned to the division that matches the gender on their legal documents regardless of their sex characteristics in line with a “transgender variant and intersex inmates policy” launched this morning.

To date, prisoners were admitted to the section which reflected the gender listed on their birth certificate, Home Affairs Minister Carmelo Abela and Civil Liberties Minister Helena Dalli said.

Tuesday, 28 March 2017

Times: Malta to host HIV technical meeting next year
Friday, June 10, 2016, 15:23

Dr Fearne (right) at the UN general assembly. Photo: Health Ministry

Malta is to host a Europe-wide meeting on HIV prevention and mitigation strategies during its six-month stint as president of the European Council next year.

Health Minister Chris Fearne made the announcement while addressing the UN assembly in New York.

Wednesday, 1 March 2017

BuzzFeed: Meet The Man Who Stopped Thousands Of People Becoming HIV-Positive

“I knew I was doing something of substance, but it’s really overwhelming.” In an exclusive interview with BuzzFeed News, Greg Owen reveals the story behind Britain’s largest ever drop in HIV transmissions.

Patrick Strudwick, BuzzFeed UK LGBT Editorposted on Feb. 25, 2017, at 9:49 a.m.

Laura Gallant / Tim Lane / BuzzFeed

A few days before Christmas 2016, a phone call took place that no one could have predicted.

One of the world’s most esteemed HIV doctors, Professor Sheena McCormack – whose life’s work as an epidemiologist has been to track and fight the virus – picked up the phone to deliver a message that would make headline news: In the space of 12 months, the number of gay men in London being diagnosed with HIV had dropped by 40%. Across England it was down by a third.

Sunday, 26 February 2017

Malta Today: €135,000 in public funds for LGBTIQ support services

Malta Gay Rights Movement awarded €135,000 over three years to fund its Rainbow Support Services
Tim Diacono, 24 February 2017, 11:56am
Print Version

MGRM and the government sign agreement allocating funds to the Rainbow Support Services (Photo: James Bianchi/MediaToday)

The Rainbow Support Services, which provides support to Malta's LGBTIQ communty, will benefit from €135,000 in public funds over the next three years.

Friday, 10 February 2017

Dar tal-Kaptan: Gay Friendly Guesthouse on Gozo

10.2.2017 by Warren Bugeja

Gozo the Island of love and myth, sleepy villages, meandering country walks, long lingering dinners and spectacular sunsets. Calypso detained Ulysses for at least 7 years here. While you may not stay as long, this tiny Island will enrapture you with its sensual charms and laid back Mediterranean lifestyle. Just a 20 minute ferry ride from its big sister Malta, Gozo is worlds away in pace, mentality and energy. Stress, pressing concerns and especially the traffic seem to melt away and dissipate within a few minutes of arrival.

Wednesday, 1 February 2017


1.2.2017, Department of Information, Government of Malta


Reference Number: PR170237 , Press Release Issue Date: Feb 01, 2017
Fast-track the end of AIDS in the EU:  practical evidence-based interventions—Maltese Presidency of the Council of the European Union Conference organised in collaboration with the ECDC
HIV remains a significant public health problem in the 31 countries of the European Union and European Economic Area (EU/EEA), with around 30,000 newly diagnosed HIV infections reported each year over the last decade. In a two-day meeting held under the auspices of the Maltese EU Presidency, HIV experts from across the European Union will discuss how to reverse this trend and how to prepare Europe to achieve the set target of ending AIDS by 2030.[i]

Sunday, 22 January 2017

Malta Today: Standard-bearer for humanism, tireless civil rights campaigner Ramon Casha, passes away

‘Honest free-thinker’ Ramon Casha, chair of the Malta Humanists Association, passes away

Matthew Vella, 22 January 2017, 7:02pm

Ramon Casha: ‘altruistic humanist who worked tirelessly for the good of the Maltese society’

One of Malta’s foremost civil society activists, Ramon Casha, has passed away.

Casha, 47, was said to have died from medical complications at Mater Dei Hospital. He had been readmitted to hospital following injuries he incurred in a motorcycle accident back in July 2016.

He was the chairperson of the Malta Humanists Association (MHA), the first such organisation of its kind in Malta, and a vocal defender of secularism in various public fora both online and offline.

Times: Ramon Casha, chairman of the humanist society, passes away
Sunday, January 22, 2017, 19:09

Tributes are flowing in this evening for Ramon Casha, chairman of the Malta Humanist Society, civil rights campaigner and a frequent commenter on Times of Malta, who has passed away.

Michael Briguglio, former chairman of Alternattiva wrote in a Facebook post: Rest in peace Ramon Casha: honest, free-thinking and non-partisan civil society campaigner within Malta Humanist Association and so many causes.

Raphael Vassallo, journalist and fellow founder of the Malta Humanist Association added:
'...We are such stuff
As dreams are made on, and our little life
Is rounded with a sleep.'
Sleep peacefully, Ramon.

Insite, the University students' organisation described him as "a strong speaker and supporter of numerous worthy causes, particularly women's rights."

Mr Casha, 46, an IT specialist, was seriously injured in a motorcycle accident last July.