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Global campaigns to secure protections for LGBTQI+ people

11:11, 15/6/2022

Home » News & Knowledge » Global campaigns to secure protections for LGBTQI+ people

Global campaigns to secure protections for LGBTQI+ people have made excellent progress over recent years.

 

But we cannot take the foot off the gas now, many people are still facing prejudice and violence on a daily basis. Sexual orientation and gender identity are hugely integral aspects of ourselves and should never lead to discrimination or harm.

 

Global campaigns to secure protections for LGBTQI+ people

 

LGBTQI+ History Month is the perfect time to start conversations and support your colleagues, friends and family. We should not remain stagnant and should continue to push the boundaries in order to see the progression that is needed.

I myself am an openly cis gay man who uses he/him pronouns and I have found solace in those around me to allow me to feel comfortable and be able to express who I really am. But that cannot always be said. I was, at a young age, pushed into sports; rugby, karate, squash you name it I have probably played it at some point.

However, as I got older I started to struggle within these sports. I was relentlessly picked on and called names for the way I talked, the way I walked or the way I dressed, I did not fit into the uber masculine criteria. People made their decision about me before I had even known what I was.

I didn’t know if I was gay/straight/bisexual, I didn’t know what I was and I had no one to look up or turn to for help. However, through years and years of personal, emotional and physical progression I have been able to now feel confident in saying that I am a gay man.

However, whilst I may be very proud of who I am I still face prejudice every day and like many other people in the LGBQI + community, have to dilute my personality for the fear of being judged, talked about, or even physically assaulted.

It’s the fear of knowing that I cannot walk down the street with my partner and not have people make sideways looks. I cannot kiss my partner on the lips without being heckled.

These are just some of the daily struggled that people in the LGBTQI+ community suffer. Whilst I do not profess to know the struggles that every person goes through, I know that we all share one view and that is; that it still goes on all the time.

It may shock some but In a recent new it has been reported that two men have been executed over charges relating to homosexuality (Iran executes 2 gay men over sodomy charges, rights group says (nbcnews.com)).

But a little closer to home, there have been reports of so called “conversion therapy” (trying to make a person heterosexual) in a Sheffield Church (Conversion therapy: Gay man talks of church ‘exorcism’ trauma – BBC News).

These are just two recent stories in the week of this blog. It is sad that this is a weekly occurrence and news that is not always shared on a global scale. Time has to be taken to seek this kind of updates.

Here in Leeds there are still continuous reports of hate crimes against LGBTQI+ members. Our own City is still not seen as a safe place. Figures show that an estimated 1 in 10 hate crimes are reported and as such a true reflection of the level of abuse and discrimination is not reported.

Obviously change cannot happen over night but the reported crimes are still high and help and support is needed by the many to drown out the few.

West Yorkshire police now have a dedicated program to assist with the LGBTQI+ community members with tackling homophobic, transphobic and biphobic language and bullying in schools. There are also many local community groups created to help support, include and promote the LGBTQI+ community.

I want to create a safe space where everyone can feel welcomed for whatever and whomever they are. I want to make Oakwood Solicitors that safe space.

I want all clients to feel welcomed, all staff to be reassured and comfortable and I want to start the conversation that many are too scared or unsure how to start. Let’s take this opportunity to develop and grow.

 

Further reading

Bullying and harassment at work – Oakwood Solicitors

 

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Meet the author

Joseph Hilton is currently a Paralegal in the Medical Negligence Department. Joseph started working at Oakwood Solicitors Ltd in 2020 and has completed his Law Degree at The Leeds University, along wi…

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