A day of action to highlight LGBTQ+ inequality
May 17 marks the 18th annual International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia. The day was created to draw attention to the violence and discrimination which is still experienced by lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, intersex people and all other people with diverse sexual orientations, gender identities or expressions, and sex characteristics.
The date itself was chosen to remember the World Health Organisation’s decision in 1990 to declassify homosexuality as a mental disorder. It represents a cultural landmark which can be used to draw worldwide attention to the plight faced by LGBTQ+ people; for example, in 37 of the countries the day is celebrated in, same-sex acts are still illegal.
The day of worldwide celebrations aim to act as a jump off point from which action can be taken. It aims to engage with institutions and policymakers involved in shaping laws across the globe, bringing about positive change worldwide.
Every year a different theme is chosen. This year the theme which will shape the celebration is “Our Bodies, Our Lives, Our Rights”, a theme which highlights demands to freely express gender and sexuality without threat of violence or subjugation (and a timely statement given current goings on across the Atlantic with regards to Roe vs. Wade).
Hopefully you can take inspiration from the great events being organised across the globe, which you can access via Twitter. You can also touch base with the Leeds City College LGBTQ+ Society, a safe space for those who identify as LGBTQ+. They run regular Google Chat groups on Tuesdays and Thursdays between 4pm and 5pm, which you can sign up for by filling out this form, and straight allies are also welcome. If these times don’t work for you but you would like to join, or if you have any questions about the society, please email email@example.com.