Sinopoli v Harrison (Human Rights) [2017] VCAT 355 (10 March 2017)

Date of order: 10 March 2017
“Applicant claims that in the delivery of services and in withdrawing services the Respondents unlawfully discriminated against her and victimised her – Applicant directed to produce all her evidence – Respondents then applied for claim to be struck out or dismissed – dismissal appropriate if claim is obviously hopeless or unsustainable – Tribunal’s approach is cautious – insufficient evidence to establish on balance of probabilities that Respondents victimised or unlawfully discriminated against Applicant – other issues raised by the Applicant not covered by the relevant legislation – outside jurisdiction – Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal Act 1998 s75 – Equal Opportunity Act 2010 ss 6,7,8,9,103,104.”
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California Lawmakers Hold LGBT Caucus Briefing on Bill that Would Decriminalize HIV

ECT, 10 March 2017
Source: ECT
“On Thursday, the LGBT Caucus held a briefing on the decriminalizing HIV and SB 239. The controversial bill, Senate Bill 239, introduced in early February, would repeal laws passed more than three-decades ago that Wiener and supporters say are discriminatory and not based in science. The proposed bill would treat HIV like other communicable diseases under California Law. According to the proposed bill, it would make it a misdemeanor instead of a felony to intentionally expose someone to HIV.”
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Ceau?escu’s orphans: what a regressive abortion law does to a country

The Conversation, 1 February 2017
Author: Sharon Maxwell Magnus
“Donald Trump’s announcement of the reinstatement and reinforcement of the “global gag” will have a devastating impact in some countries. In developing countries such as Nepal and in Sub-Saharan Africa life chances will be diminished and the abortion rate may even go up. This result was observed in a World Health Organisation study of a previous iteration of this policy which was brought in by George W Bush in 2001 and was rescinded in 2009 by Barack Obama.”
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South African scandal after nearly 100 mental health patients die

The Guardian, 2 February 2017
Source: Agence France-Presse
“At least 94 patients with mental health issues died after South African authorities moved them from hospitals to unlicensed health facilities. Many of the deaths were due to pneumonia, dehydration and diarrhoea. The centres also failed to provide seriously ill patients with enough food and water, leaving them severely malnourished, underweight and in some cases dying from dehydration.”
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Northern Territory must respect women’s judgment on abortion, advocates say

The Guardian, 19 January 2017
Author: Helen Davidson
“The Northern Territory must give more respect to women as competent decision-makers and stop using criminal law to restrict access to abortion, the Human Rights Law Centre has urged. Outside of limited allowable circumstances, abortion is a criminal offence under the NT criminal code, and the territory is currently the only Australian jurisdiction where women must be in a hospital for any abortion. The availability of medical terminations – using the drug known as RU486 – lags far behind the rest of the country.”
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Doctors Want To Learn More About Treating Transgender Patients, Survey Shows

Huffington Post, 12 January 2017
Author: Anna Almendrala
“One in three transgender patients reports experiencing serious discrimination or bias when seeking medical care, even when that care is unrelated to their transgender status. While some of these negative interactions in health care may stem from discriminatory attitudes on the part of medical care professionals, a survey reveals that doctors feel they lack the training they need to feel confident when treating transgender patients.”
Find article here.

Federal judge halts transgender health protections

The Hill, 31 December 2017
Author: Mallory Shelbourne
“A federal judge in Texas on Saturday halted enforcement of federal rules aimed at preventing doctors from discriminating against transgender individuals. U.S. District Judge Reed O’Connor granted the temporary injunction, saying the rules “likely violate” the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, according to The Associated Press.”
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Insurers ignoring calls to address discrimination: mental health groups

SMH, 2 January 2017
Author: Georgia Wilkins
“Mental health groups have accused the life insurance industry of ignoring calls to address discrimination, saying its treatment of people with mental health conditions is unethical and potentially unlawful.”
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European first: Malta bans gay conversion therapy

SBS, 7 December 2016
Author: Ben Winsor
“The Mediterranean Island of Malta has become the first country in Europe to ban ‘gay conversion therapy’, a practice that aims to ‘cure’ homosexuality. Legislation banning the practice was passed unanimously by a parliamentary committee in November, and has now been formally approved. The law imposes penalties of up to 10,000 euros and a year in jail for professionals found offering conversion services, local media reports.”
Find article here.