15/05/2012 / Leave a comment / Permalink

Council raises awareness of International Day Against Homophobia

Related topics: Community / My area

Shropshire Council will be raising awareness and encouraging Shropshire residents to support International Day Against Homophobia on Thursday 17 May 2012.

Shropshire Council is committed to tackling discrimination in the community, and is determined to tackle discrimination within the workplace, and in those organisations that deliver services on our behalf. 

International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia (IDAHO) is an opportunity for individuals and organisations to stand up against homophobia and transphobia, and is designed to raise awareness of the impact of prejudice and discrimination on the health and well-being of lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans people throughout the world, and also on the lives of their families, friends and colleagues.

This year’s theme is ‘Sexual diversity in the workplace – It pays off’.  The goal of the campaign is to point out the positive aspects of sexual diversity in the workplace as well as its benefits for employers, companies, institutions and workers alike.

Shropshire Council supports the Shropshire LGB (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) Network group, which meets quarterly in and around Shrewsbury.  Groups and campaigns which the network supports include:

  • Homophobia in Education Steering Group – supporting Shropshire’s schools to deal with homophobic bullying
  • Are You Being Served -a group putting together research in to the needs of LGB people who use agencies in Shropshire
  • LGBT History Month – putting together an event/information with the library service and archives service each February)
  • Rainbow Film Festival – an annual week of LGBT films in Shrewsbury, plus other events
  • Shropshire Unison LGBT group – support group for LGBT union members with an annual conference
  • Equalities Forum – networking with groups/people from equality and diversity groups within Shropshire Partnership, meets quarterly.

Gwilym Butler, Shropshire Council’s Cabinet member with responsibility for equalities, said:

“Shropshire Council fully supports this day and continues to lead the equality agenda.  Homophobia affects and destroys many lives from young to old and should not be accepted in any society.    

“We also continue to support the multi-agency initiative to tackle hate crime in Shropshire ‘We Won’t Tolerate It’, and want to encourage people from the lesbian, gay and bisexual communities to come forward and report all homophobic incidents so that appropriate support can be provided to the victims, and perpetrators dealt with.   All incidents are dealt with using complete confidentiality.

“Please join us on this important date to pledge a commitment to tackle homophobia and transphobia and promote LGBT equality for your staff, service users and customers.”

Cecilia Motley, Shropshire Council’s Cabinet member with responsibility for schools, said:

“We believe children and young people should be able to enjoy their childhood and are prepared for adult life in a safe and prejudice free environment.  Our Homophobia in Education Steering Group help to equip our schools to deal with homophobic bullying by addressing and correcting ill-informed views, ignorance and bigotry.

“All secondary schools in Shropshire have been given a free copy of the ‘Some People Are Gay – Get Over It!’ DVD produced in partnership by Shropshire Archives and William Brookes School.  The DVD provides schools and youth groups in Shropshire with a valuable tool to help them tackle prejudice and homophobic bullying.”

If you or someone you know is suffering abuse because of your sexuality, please contact the Police Hate Incident Reporting Line  on 0300 333 3000 or the police non-emergency number 101, or click here where you will find the locations of the various reporting sites across Shropshire.

For more information about the Shropshire LGB network please contact iran.morris@shropshire.gov.uk or yvonne.hariss-daniels@shropshire.gov.uk.

If you want to know more the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia, please visit the IDAHO website.

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