Michael Cashman CBE
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Michael Maurice CashmanBorn: Sun 17th December 1950 (age: 62)
He appeared in the 1982 story Time-Flight
As a child actor he was cast in the role of Oliver Twist in the original run of Lionel Bart's musical Oliver!, but he is possibly best known for his role as Colin Russell in BBCTV's EastEnders – a character remembered for being a participant in the first gay kiss in a British soap opera. He also appeared in the ITV drama serial The Sandbaggers.
A member of the Civil Liberties Committee, Michael Cashman has been a rapporteur on several key initiatives including an important initiative on funerals of those who die in third countries - an issue he was motivated to act on after the death of his own father.
In the Petitions Committee, where he is first vice-chair, Michael Cashman has been working on the so-called Spanish Land Grab crisis.
He is a trenchant critic of discrimination against minorities within the European Union. He has been leading a cross-party coalition to tackle the rise in homophobia throughout Europe. He has in the past supported the gay pride march in Warsaw, which he attended. He is also the President of the European Parliament's Intergroup on gay and lesbian issues. Cashman is a member of the ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly.
In 2007 he was awarded an honorary doctorate from the University of Staffordshire for his human rights work. That same year he was elected MEP of the Year for Justice and Fundamental Rights by his peers.
He is the treasurer of Equity and led the campaign to obtain pension rights for members.
Cashman registered a civil partnership with Paul Cottingham, his partner of over twenty years, on 11 March 2006.
On 29th December 2012 it was announced that he would be awarded the CBE for public and political service.
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