BiCon unveils date
The big annual bi festival is set for August 2015
Meet other bis...
All across the country there are local bi meetups: find something down your way!
Blood ban reform
USA follows UK lead on blood donation
December’s edition out now!
Order issue 128 or subscribe online
Married in Scotland too
First same-sex marriages herald the New Year in Scotland

BCN: Britain's bimonthly bisexual magazine - giving voice to the bi community since 1995.

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 Meet bis: late January 2015

lioncake-300x190Welcome to our weekly bi roundup!

Monday is Bristol BiVisible’s regular coffee meet at Cafe Kino on Stoke’s Croft from 7pm: spot the bis by looking for the purple teapot!

Wednesday in Leeds the local bi group get together at Mesmac, 60 Upper Basinghall Street – 7pm sharp start.

Sunday is Glasgow Bi Group from 2pm, at Gay Men’s Health center, Fourth Floor 30 Bell Street.

Finally this week voting closes in the ShoutOut awards where there are bi organisations and events shortlisted in three categories – BiPhoria, BiVisible, and Good Bi Summer, BiCon and BiFest Wales. Make sure your vote is in by Saturday!

January 26, 2015 · news · Comments Closed
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 Bisexuals make Obama’s State of the Union

USAUS President Barack Obama today became the first American premier to use the words “bisexual”, “lesbian” and “transgender” in the State Of The Union annual address.

“As Americans, we respect human dignity, even when we’re threatened, which is why I’ve prohibited torture, and worked to make sure our use of new technology like drones is properly constrained,” Obama said. “That’s why we defend free speech, and advocate for political prisoners, and condemn the persecution of women, or religious minorities, or people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender. We do these things not only because they’re right, but because they make us safer.”

January 20, 2015 · news · Comments Closed
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 Meet bis this week

Local Bi GroupsWant to get out and meet some other bis? We have plenty of bi meets in our diary around the country in the next few days!

Monday night in London it’s the Over 50s bi group from 6pm-8pm at AgeUK, Tavis House, Tavistock Square, London. WC1H 9NA.

Tuesday night has three meets. Third Way meet in Wolverhampton at LGBT Centre, 4 Salop St, from 7pm.

Swansea bis meet on Tuesday too, from 7.45pm at Mozarts, Walter Road: txt: 07982 308812 or email BiSwansea1@yahoo.co.uk for more details.

And Manchester BiPhoria also has its regular pub meet on Tuesday from 8pm at the Waterhouse, next to the Town Hall. Look for the table with the cuddly lion – usually toward the back of the pub. This’ll be their last hurrah before Manchester Pride so they’ll probably be dishing out their swanky Manchester Bisexuals teeshirts for the parade.

Wednesday night sees Bi & Beyond meeting from 7pm at the LGBT Centre for Health & Wellbeing, 9 Howe St, Edinburgh.

Finally Thursday is the regular get-together for London Bi Meetup, at the O Bar from 7.30pm. More here

January 18, 2015 · news · Comments Closed
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 BBC loses its taste for bisexual zombies

BBC3 have today announced there will be no third season of “In The Flesh”.

The programme, about the social tensions between zombies and humans after a zombie apocalypse has turned into a kind of truce between the living and undead, included one of TV’s few bi male characters, Kieren Walker.  His two romantic interests depicted in the series have both been male but in interviews about the programme the show’s creator Dominic Mitchell has talked about Kieren as a bisexual man.

A statement from the BBC said that “BBC Three is very proud of the two award-winning series of In the Flesh. However, given there is only budget for one original drama series a year on the channel it won’t be returning.

“We loved the show but have to make hard choices to bring new shows through and create room for emerging talent.”

January 16, 2015 · news · Comments Closed
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 October BCN now online

You can read the October 2014 issue of BCN online now. Articles include:

BCN 127: October 2014

Becoming a parent and staying bi-visible

Canada – research backs bi groups

Scotland sets date for first weddings
Bis at Work: PWC
Badges at BiCon – what are they for?
This year’s BiCon debates
Bi Visibility Day 2014 roundup
Leeds Bi Group kicks off
BiMediaWatch: Witches of East End, Constantine and Gotham

Review: Best Bi Short Stories (ed Sheela Lambert)

Subscribe for the latest issue – direct to your door

 

January 14, 2015 · news · Comments Closed
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 New report highlights bi women’s health challenges

Largest UK survey of its kind finds bisexual women more likely to self-harm, have eating problems and feel depressed

women-stats-2015Bisexual women are more likely to experience poor mental health and mental distress than lesbians, according to new research published in the Journal of Public Health.

Bisexual women were 64% more likely to report an eating problem and 37% more likely to have deliberately self-harmed than lesbians. They were also 26% more likely to have felt depressed and 20% more likely to have suffered from anxiety in the previous year than lesbians.

Using data from the 2007 Stonewall UK Women’s Health Survey, researchers from the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine analysed responses from 5,706 bisexual and lesbian women living in the UK aged 14 or over.

The study found bisexual women were less likely to be ‘out’ to friends, family and work colleagues and also less likely to be in a relationship. According to the results, bisexual women were less likely to experience sexuality-related discrimination from work, healthcare services, education and family than lesbians, but more likely to experience discrimination from friends.

Study senior author Dr Ford Hickson, at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, said: “Bisexual people are at particular risk of invisibility and marginalisation from both gay/lesbian communities and mainstream society. Although bisexual women in our study reported experiencing less sexuality-based discrimination than lesbians, this did not benefit their mental health. Mental health services should be aware of both the differences and the similarities in bisexual and lesbian women’s mental health care needs, and tailor the services they provide accordingly.”

Generation Gap?

The authors also found that older bisexual women had more suicidal thoughts than younger bisexual women. Additionally, bisexual women were more likely to report poor physical health and more likely to use marijuana or tranquilisers than lesbians.

Study lead author Lisa Colledge, who conducted the research at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, added: “These disturbing results echo international findings on mental health differences between bisexual and homosexual people. Although non-heterosexual women as a group have far poorer mental health than heterosexual women, bisexual women report even worse mental distress than lesbians. All women deserve equal chances of mental wellbeing and happiness, regardless of their sexuality. Homophobic prejudice is now widely and rightly condemned; specific stigma around bisexual identity needs to be similarly confronted.”

In the UK, the numbers of women identifying as lesbian and as bisexual are similar. However, only 16% of the survey participants were bisexual women. The study authors suggest this may be linked to bisexual women’s reluctance to disclose their sexual identity. The authors add that “concealment of sexual orientation is known to be related to poorer mental health in sexual minority women”.

The study authors suggest that worse mental health in bisexual women than in lesbians may be due to more negative social attitudes towards bisexuality compared with lesbian and gay identity. Consequently, bisexual women may have a more negative attitude towards themselves, and expect more social rejection, putting their mental health at risk.

BCN Editor Jen Yockney commented, “The levels of health challenge that this report highlights are alas not news to anyone who has been working in and with the bisexual community over time, and reinforce the findings of things like the 2004 and 2013 BiCon Reports and the 2004 Bisexual Life Report.

“Bisexual people face isolation from both straight and gay society – and a pressure to ‘pass’ as gay or straight to fit in that includes being erased into assumed hetero- or homosexuality when in monogamous relationships.”

“In turn that erasure of the bisexuality of other bis makes it harder for bi people to see themselves reflected in society around them, and reinforces the isolation that causes that problem.

“It’s a vicious circle of invisibility and isolation.”

The new findings differ from those of a similar UK survey in 2003, which found no difference in psychological distress between bisexual women and lesbians. The authors suggest that legal and social changes in subsequent years (e.g. the 2004 Civil Partnership Act, and improvements in public attitudes towards lesbian and gay people) may have benefitted lesbian women more than bisexual women.  The 2012 Bisexuality Report highlights ongoing prejudice against UK bisexual people.

The authors note their findings may be limited because survey participants were not a random sample of the population and were therefore unlikely to be representative of all UK bisexual women and lesbians. They add that their findings are observed associations and it is therefore not possible to state that bisexual identity causes poorer mental health than lesbian identity – in other words, being bisexual in our society may cause or just be coincidental with these health issues, not that bisexuality innately causes health problems.

January 14, 2015 · news · Comments Closed
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 BiCon 2015 Announces Venue

BiCon 2015The venue for the year’s biggest bi festival has been announced. BiCon 2015 will be in Nottingham at the University Park Campus. A few weeks ago the dates for were announced as August 13th – 16th.

Conference, convention, gathering, whatever you want to call it BiCon is the largest bi-focused event of the year, with typically 250 – 400 people attending. Bookings will open soon with options both to stay on-site or for day / weekend passes for those who want live locally, don’t fancy student halls accommodation.

You can find out more here.

January 13, 2015 · news · Comments Closed
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 Meet bis this week! Bristol, Sheffield, Leeds & more

lioncake-300x190Want some bi-mates? There are lots of bi meetups going on around the country this week.

Monday is Bristol BiVisible’s regular coffee meet at Cafe Kino on Stoke’s Croft from 7pm: spot the bis by looking for the purple teapot.

Tuesday night in Sheffield sees the meetup of Sheffield Bi+ from 6pm at Interval Bar. It’s mostly students who attend but all bis welcome!

Tuesday evening also sees the first Bisexual Underground of the year in London at the Blue Posts from 6pm, while in Birmingham, Brum Bi Group meets at the LGBT Centre from 7.30.

Wednesday night Leeds Bi Group meet at Mesmac from 7pm while Colchester Bi Group meets at the Outhouse, also from 7pm.

Finally on Sunday at 2pm in Manchester BiPhoria meet for coffee at the Vienna Coffee House, Mosley Street.  Look for the lion.

Find out more about bi meets around the country here.

 

January 11, 2015 · news · Comments Closed
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