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In the Press

  • Romania moved a step closer to ruling out the possibility of legalizing same-sex marriage on Wednesday when its top court paved the way for a referendum on defining marriage in the constitution as a union strictly between a man and a woman.

    The nine judges on the Constitutional Court ruled unanimously that a proposal signed by 3 million Romanians this year to change the constitution's definition of marriage was valid.

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  • A nursery worker has been struck off for calling a toddler a "terrorist" and saying “go away and bomb somewhere else".

    Nikki Alexander lost her job at Busy Bees nursery in Edinburgh for a catalogue of racist and physical abuse, and swearing at children all under the age of two.

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  • Christians in Russia are now banned from discussing their faith outside of churches and other designated places under new anti-terror laws.

    From Wednesday onwards it is illegal to preach, teach or share faith outside state-controlled settings.

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  • Dsputes about where children of separated parents should live or how much time they spend with each parent could be resolved away from the daunting surroundings of a courtroom.

    The Family Law Arbitration Scheme, which began in 2012 to deal with financial matters, is to be extended to disputes concerning parental responsibility.

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  • Medical statements don't usually make for captivating reading, but the American Academy of Pediatrics released a clinical report Monday that ought to be shouted from the rooftops.

    The statement, which will appear in the August Journal of Pediatrics, urges pediatricians to talk to their patients about sex, using evidence-based information about healthy relationships, contraceptives and responsible sexual activity.

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  • A Dutch Christian charity had its government funding withdrawn after pressure from MPs over its opposition to active homosexual relationships.

    Government minister Jet Bussemaker said Hart van Homo's would not receive further government money after the Netherlands' ruling Party for Freedom and Democracy argued the charity, which encourages celibacy for gay Christians, sent out the wrong message.

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  • Churches throughout India are stepping up protests against the country’s discriminatory caste system which disadvantages Dalit Christians and Muslims. The caste system is a Hindu-based status system that grades different groups of people on a social scale.

    The lowest castes – the Dalits, or untouchables – are discriminated against in the job market and in the provision of services. Officially, the government is trying to remove the caste discrimination and has introduced measures to provide support for Dalits – designating it a scheduled caste and providing additional state benefits.

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  • Legalized euthanasia and physician-assisted suicide are mainly used by patients with cancer, but remain rare, according to a new analysis of such programs.

    In the last year alone, California has legalized physician-assisted suicide, Canada legalized both physician-assisted suicide and euthanasia, and Colombia performed its first legal euthanasia, said John Urwin, a study author from the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. "In order to inform current debates, it's imperative to understand current laws and practices."

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  • A new law allowing same sex marriage in the Isle of Man will come into effect on Friday, the Tynwald Government has confirmed.

    Final implementation of the Marriage and Civil Partnership Amendment Act was welcomed by Chief Minister Allan Bell CBE MHK, who described the move as an ‘historic moment’ for the Island.

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  • Last week, the Maltese government rejected euthanasia and decided to codify “living wills.” The Malta Independent news published a statement from government Chairperson, Professor Arnold Cassola.

    “A ‘biological will’ would allow a person, when still in full possession of one’s intellectual faculties, to declare what kind of treatment to accept and whether to prolong or not in an artificial way – through the use of machines or other artificial systems – a life that would otherwise have naturally come to an end. The standards of palliative care should also be looked into to guarantee dignified end-of-life care for everyone.” 

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