Glasgow Herald 1940 - 1968:
Glasgow Herald 1957:
in Criminal Law Proposed — [Sir John] Wolfenden Committee
Report on Homosexual Offences, GH 1957 5 Sep 7g;
- From Our Parliamentary Correspondent: Westminster, Wednesday.
- The Committee on Homosexual
Offences and Prostitution report chaired by Sir John Wolfenden
Vice-chancellor of Reading University published today,
recommend that homosexual behaviour between consenting adults in
private should no longer be a criminal offence.
- It was not the function of the law to intervene in
the private lives of citizens, nor to seek to enforce any particular
pattern of behaviour, except so far as this might be necessary
to preserve public order and decency, to protect the citizen from
what was offensive of injurious, and to provide sufficient safeguards
against the exploitation of others, particularly those specially
- Mr. James Adair, formerly
Procurator-Fiscal in Glasgow dissented saying that if
sanctions of the law were removed, this would remove
from police opportunities to carry out important preventive
work. He said that his training
and experience as a Procurator-Fiscal in Scotland may have coloured
his view on the importance of such sanctions.
- Others member,appointed in 1954,
emphasise that society and the law ought to give
to individual freedom of choice and action in matters of private
morality. There must remain a realm of private morality and immorality "which
is, in brief and crude terms, not the law's business."
- Police practice
- They recommended that "adulthood" should
be taken as 21 years of age
- They called attention to variations in police practice in different
parts of the country and to differences
between England and Scotland.
- They recommended the maximum penalties for street offences
be increased and progressively higher penalties
for repeated offences, and imprisonment
should be available as an ultimate sanction. They suggested
that the possibility of introducing
the formal system of cautioning as in force
in Edinburgh and Glasgow.
- [Summary] (Full report on page 10 of the Glasgow Herald)
GH 1957 5 Sep 10d; Leader (portrait of John Wolfenden);
broadcast 2 Sep 9a;
discusses report 2 Nov 2h;
Glasgow Herald 1964
Homosexuals" —Directive to police, GH 1964 Jul 16, 14e;
- The Director of Public Prosecutions has instructed chief
constables to seek his advice in future before bringing proceedings
against consenting male adults who carry out homosexual acts
- The directive is issued to achieve greater uniformity of
enforcement of the law regarding private acts of homosexuality.
- Homosexual behaviour between consenting adults in private has
continued to be punishable despite the recommendations of the
Wolfenden Committee in 1957 that it should no longer remain a
Glasgow Herald 1965
Law Reform Soc. - Issue case summary, GH 1965 May 7, 11c;
- At least one million men in Britain, and possibly a far higher
number, are wholly of predominantly homosexual in temperament
if not in overt behaviour, state the Homosexual Law Reform Society.
- They have issued a case summary in anticipation of a debate in
the House of Lords on Wednesday when Lord Arran is due to call
attention to the recommendations of the 1957 Wolfenden Committee
on the law relating to homosexual offences.
- The committee recommended that homosexual behaviour between
consenting adults in private should no longer be a criminal offence.
- The society say their experience of the existing law, under which
all homosexual acts are illegal even when committed by consent
and in private, leaves no doubt that the failure to implement the
Wolfenden Committee's proposals result directly in a far greater
amount of blackmail, robbery, petty theft, and other crimes of
extortion and intimidation than would otherwise exist.
- "In addition we are convinced that the present law deters a
great many men — especially young men and adolescents — from
seeking psychological medical treatment at the earliest possible moment
when it would be most beneficial to them."
- Public opinion, it was sometimes said, was not really for reform.
But a far greater weight of influential opinion had been expressed
in favour of the Wolfenden proposals than against them.
- The report, which has been submitted to the Home Secretary,
contains details of cases which, the society say, amply demonstrate
that homosexual men cannot enjoy the same degree of protection
as other citizens against blackmail, violence, robbery, and extortion
until their legal status is altered.
- The law is responsible for a number of
deaths of homosexual men every year, the society say, either
by suicide or murder.
Glasgow Herald 1966: Nothing
Glasgow Herald 1967: Nothing
Glasgow Herald 1968:
Committee try again to get understanding for homosexuals, GH 10 May
- Since May 24, 1967 when the Church of Scotland General
Assembly rejected a motion asking sympathy for homosexuals, not
one homosexual man has applied to the Church for help and advice.
The rejected motion is being brought back this year.
The moral welfare committee recommends that the Assembly urge that: —
more sympathetic understanding of the difficulties and handicaps
of those suffering from homosexual tendencies is needed throughout
the community, and regret the comparative lack of psychiatric and
medical treatment available.
(2) ministers show a special
pastoral concern and care for those suffering from such tendencies.
(3) it should be considered whether
homosexual acts between consenting adults in private should continue
to be an offence under the law of Scotland.
- The Assembly rejected
that in favour of a counter-motion which "deplored the
prevalence of homosexual practices as a source of uncleanness and
deterioration in human character, and of weakness and decadence
in the nation's life." ....
- "Some who have such
homosexual tendencies have stated despairingly that they now
consider the Church's attitude is one of unfeeling condemnation." ...
Under the Sexual Offences Act homosexual acts in private between
consenting males aged over 21 are no longer crimes in England and
Wales. They are still crimes in Scotland.
- The committee argued that until the law is changed any
rehabilitation work in Scotland is doomed to
failure, because practicing homosexuals will be too afraid
and too guilt-ridden to make any approach. ...
- police, G
Glasgow Herald 1969:
Progressive Steps in Canada Nothing, GH 23 Aug 1969
- MORAG ALEXANDER, a young Scotswoman at present living in Ontario,
Canada, discusses the implications of the recently passed Criminal
- Early this summer in Canada the Criminal Code Amendment Act, which
has been hailed both as the most enlightened measure introduced
into the Commons in 20 years, and also for Canada, was passed by
Pierre Trudeau's Liberal Government.
- The bill was first introduced into the Commons during the Lester
Pearson's term of office, but it owes it existence mainly to Trudeau,
who was minister of Justice in the Pearson Government.
- The omnibus measure dealt with such varied matters as gross indecency,
drunken driving, lotteries, abortion, homosexuality, and firearms
control: yet despite the wide range the Government refused to allow
the Bill to be spit up. The clauses which caused most opposition
were those dealing with homosexuality and abortion, and at one stage
it looked as if the Bill would be talked out of the Commons. The
French Canadian Creditiste Party ... talking for weeks ... amendments
... legalising homosexual acts between consenting adults and the
liberalising of abortion laws, but the new House rules, limiting
peaches to 40 minutes, defeated them.
- ... the law does little to simplify the law for women seeking a
legal therapeutic abortion.
- When Trudeau, as Minister of Justice, first introduced his Bill
... he was taking the kind of risk taken by Humfrey Berkely in Britain;
Trudeau is Catholic and unmarried. He has always believed that the
State has no business in the nation's bedrooms, and tried to make
it clear that the legislation he proposed would only ease the burdens
of unfortunate people, not set Canada on a course of promiscuity
and sodomy. Predictably, however, the whispers were whispered
and the hate literature distributed: but the Bill was reintroduced
by John Turner, Justice Minister of the Trudeau Government.
- Turner refused to allow the Bill to be split to permit voting on
individual issues, insisting that the will of Parliament must be
expressed on the entire Bill. ... Justice Minister favours annual
reassessment of the Criminal Code ... to keep the law closer to reality.
- The Bible-belt of Saskatchewan will see the Act in the way one
Creditiste ... saw it...: abortion, infanticide, and divorce ruined
ancient ROme, and now seem to be ruining Canada. Toronto the good
would rather pretend that homosexuality does not exist. ...
for the vast majority of Canadians this Act is the first real sign
of progress. By coincidence, on the same day as the Criminal Law
Amendment Act was passed by the Commons a Senate Bill legislating
contraceptives was passed. Until the passage of this Act the sale
of contraceptive pills and devices and the giving of advice on contraception,
even by doctors, were illegal.
Glasgow Herald 1970: Nothing