June 1998 – News
Putting the politics back into Pride
The largest ever contingent of bisexuals marched through London on 4 July. Whilst the festival was cancelled, Bi’s had a place a near the front of the March and took the opportunity to make their feelings known about the need for legal reform.
Full story, page 6.
In the wake of the Pride festival fiasco came an announcement that next year Europride will be held in London. The march and festival will be hosted by the Pride Trust, who last held Europride in 1992. The Trust have been struggling with financial problems and lost the festival this year to a bid from Freedom UK, who then failed to deliver.
In January 1996, the Trust changed its mission statement and the name of the event to be inclusive of bisexuals and transgendered people.
Equal at 16! …and more to come
The announcement of a wholesale review of the 1967 Sexual Offences Act seemed likely as MPs voted overwhelmingly for an equal age of consent. Ann Keene’s new clause was backed by a majority of 2 to 1, and a wrecking amendment was voted down on 22 June.
Home Office minister, Alun Michael, indicated that a review is likely to be announced before the end of July, as the government did not wish to continue altering the Act piecemeal. A major issue in the review is likely to be the currently unequal definition of privacy.
More than 1,000 people were at the Commons to back the changes, waiting for the vote in committee rooms and outside the House, before moving on to G.A.Y. to celebrate (see page 2).