Star Observer

June 2020 - Present 

As a passionate advocate for human rights, I have always taken an interest in making sure the media landscape is reflective of all communities, not just the majority. With this in mind, I took up freelancing at the Star Observer to help tell the stories of LGBTQIPA+ people across Australia. 

Dykes On Bikes Has A New President

There’s nothing quite like riding a motorcycle surrounded by people you consider family and exploring different regions and roads to travel. Sydney Dykes On Bikes members know this all too well, and for them, the club is more than just a social group. Emily Saunders, the newly instated President, is keen to give back to the group she considers a second family. “My partner at the time had been riding since they were 17, and they and their sister both rode and started getting into Dykes On Bike

First Person Cured Of HIV Dies

Timothy Ray Brown, who made history as the first person known to be cured of HIV infection, has died. According to a social media post by his partner, Tim Hoeffgen, Brown died on Tuesday at his home in Palm Springs, California. Known as the ‘Berlin Patient’, Timothy was cured in 2008 after undergoing a complex stem cell transplant for lymphoma. For the past six months, he had been living with a recurrence of the leukaemia that had entered his spine and brain but remained HIV free. In a perso

Best Of The Gaybourhoods – KINGS CROSS/POTTS POINT

There are few signs as iconic as the mammoth Coca-Cola one that heralds the entrance to Kings Cross. It’s easy to spend a day getting lost amongst the sights to see, shops to browse and places to eat in Potts Point, Kings Cross and Woolloomooloo, so we have compiled a handy guide on where to start. First off, it’s always best to start your day with a hearty brunch. Locals recommend Silly Tart Kitchen for great food paired with great cocktails or grab an ever-popular smashed avo from the Oracle

Best Of The Gaybourhoods – SURRY HILLS

Surry Hills is now one of Australia’s most popular gaybourhoods and has anything but a dull history. In fact, did you know Kathleen Mary Josephine Leigh, a leading figure in the notorious Sydney razor gang wars rose to prominence as a madam, illegal trader of alcohol and cocaine and betting/gambling syndicates from her home in Surry Hills? But now, the suburb is home to great eats, incredible drinks, with an abundant culture, so it is time to start exploring it! Did someone say eggs benedict?

Suzy Wrong Lands Dream Role In Hungry Ghosts

A chance meeting meant that Suzy Wrong finally landed the role she dreamed of: a trans woman at peace with – and loved by – the world. In the SBS drama series Hungry Ghosts Suzy plays the transgender character Roxy Ling who chases demons while pursuing her passion for clairvoyance. It is not until halfway through the show that Roxy mentions she was assigned male at birth. Being chosen to bring this queer character to life was a dream for Suzy who, with the rest of the crew, worked hard to not

Best Of The Gaybourhoods – NEWTOWN

With the borders shut, dreams of flying off to Paris or New York in the near future have been slashed. But the good news is there are some gems right in our own neighbourhoods that are worth the visit. So take a day (or two) and use our handy gaybourhood guide to get back in touch with your own area. Newtown is Sydney’s very own Brooklyn, so take the opportunity to explore it or even just pop in to say hello to your favourites if you are a local. Walking down King Street, your stomach will be

Best Of The Gaybourhoods – DARLINGHURST

With the borders shut, dreams of flying off to Paris or New York in the near future have been slashed. But the good news is there are some gems right in our own neighbourhoods that are worth the visit. So take a day (or two) and use our handy gaybourhood guide to get back in touch with your own area. Darlinghurst is the place where every queer person and their ally can find their community. It’s home to a rich fabric of history, iconic watering holes and mouth-watering restaurants. Start your

Mardi Gras Exhibition Adorns Oxford Street Windows

Take a stroll down Oxford Street and immerse yourself in a window-display installation that celebrates the centre of LGBTQI history and community. WITH LOVE is a shop-front exhibition displaying fabulous Mardi Gras Parade costumes by the late Ron Muncaster, and heartwarming LGBTQI community portraits by Richard Hedger. Photographer Richard Hedger said he’s fortunate enough to cross paths with people from all walks of life. He added that the shots show a remarkable group of individuals from al

Court Date Set For Scott Johnson Murder Trial

The man charged with murdering Scott Johnson more than 30 years ago is set to face court in less than two weeks. The body of the Sydney-based American national was found at the base of a cliff at Blue Fish Point, near Manly’s North Head on December 10, 1988. Scott was aged just 27. Initially, his death was ruled as a suicide by a coronial inquest a year later but the second inquest in June 2012 returned an open finding. The matter was referred for a third inquest and, in 2017, the then-NSW Co

ACON Honour Awards Cancelled

In another devastating blow as COVID-19’s grip on the nation continues, the ACON Honour Awards for 2020, including the cocktail reception and gala ceremony, have been cancelled. The much-loved event has been running since 2007 as a way to recognise outstanding achievements and exceptional service of people and organisations from LGBTQI communities. It is also a fundraiser for ACON, NSW’s leading HIV and sexuality and gender diverse health organisation. ACON CEO Nicolas Parkhill said they regr

YouTube Admits Error In Removing Ding Dong I’m Gay Episode

A new Australian series is putting a comedic lens on issues of isolation, connection and social pressures in the LGBTQI community. Ding Dong I’m Gay has been celebrating its success with episodes released weekly. However, the success has been marred by Episode 4 being removed for “violating YouTube’s terms of service” in a turn of events “all too common for LGBTQI content, filmmakers and artists”. Tim Spencer, creator/writer/producer/star of the show, said this was presumably due to the fella

Latham Bill Labelled “Dangerous In The Extreme”

A proposed bill seeks to prohibit schools from teaching that trans and gender diverse people exist, in a move labelled as “dangerous.” On Monday night, Equality Australia held an emergency briefing educating its community on Mark Latham’s Education Legislation Amendment (Parental Rights) Bill 2020. Ghassan Kassisieh, legal director at Equality Australia, led the event on social media and said there are five primary aims of the bill. These include prohibiting schools from teaching that trans o

Sydney Swans Call For Community Diversity Guidance

Three years ago, one AFL team became the first in the league to launch a roadmap to make meaningful change. The Sydney Swans diversity action plan (DAP) tackled four key pillars: disability empowerment, multicultural inclusion, the advancement of women and pride. With the inaugural DAP expiring this week, the club announced the process to renew it. Only a week ago, Star Observer revealed that 75 per cent of Australia believes an LGBTQI person would not be safe as a spectator at a sports game.

Wagga Mardi Gras Sets New Date

Two years ago, one brave woman decided to set the wheels in motion for Wagga’s first-ever Mardi Gras. It was a massive success with more than 10,000 people filling the main street and gardens for the parade and after-party. But, in a heartbreaking decision the organiser Holly Conroy decided to cancel the 2020 event due to public safety as the coronavirus pandemic spread throughout Australia. Ms Conroy, however, as a proud trans woman refused to let that get her down and is already looking to t

Joel Creasy Calls For More Rainbow Love

A comedian is urging on the general public to support the queer community as it battles the devastating impacts of the coronavirus pandemic. In a video on social media, Joel Creasy has put out a call to action to show “some rainbow love” to a community he loves. He has made a few suggestions of ways that people can support their favourite performers, and venues and not all of them require a financial commitment. “Australia’s queer community are struggling right now, and are are often overlook

“History Of Homophobia” In Sports Needs To Be Addressed

Alarming statistics show Australian gay and lesbian sports players are more than 75% more likely to remain in the closet out of fear. Beau Newell, the national program manager of Pride In Sport Australia, said sporting institutions from social clubs right through to the professional leagues need to focus on inclusion. Mr Newell said research revealed that 75% of Australia believes an LGBTQI person would not be safe as a spectator at a sports game. “We know that 87% of gay men and 75% of lesbi

Scooby-Doo’s Velma Was Always Meant To Be Gay

There have been so many versions of Scooby-Doo and his gang after the whole concept started in 1969 and they have been loved ever since. Now, one mystery has been solved, as two creators behind separate adaptions of the much-loved series confirmed that they always intended for Velma to be a lesbian. Director and screenwriter James Gunn says he “tried” to make detective Velma “explicitly gay” in his script for the live-action movie. A Twitter account for a film podcast implored Gunn to make fu

Concerns Surround Mark Latham’s Religious Discrimination Bill

One LGBTQI organisation is urging NSW residents to fight against a proposed bill that could infringe on human rights. The NSW Parliament is conducting an inquiry into the Anti-Discrimination Amendment (Religious Freedoms and Equality) Bill 2020, introduced by One Nation NSW Leader Mark Latham MLC. Equality Australia are condemning the bill due to several provisions which could “adversely affect, among others, LGBTQI people, women, divorced and unmarried people, and even people of faith.” To h

Valentina Sampaio; The First Trans Model In Sports Illustrated

Going from strength to strength, model Valentina Sampaio has made history by becoming the first openly transgender model to be featured in Sports Illustrated’s swimsuit issue. But, even as she continues to succeed in her chosen career, Sampaio does not forget that not everyone with similar experiences is as fortunate. She has made history multiple times. In 2017, Sampaio became the first openly trans model to appear on the cover of Vogue Paris and in 2019, she became the first openly trans mod
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