It’s easy to overlook the positive LGBTQ stories in the daily news, so here are some items you may have missed.
Trudy Howson, our Co-Chair, has been interviewed by BBC London during which she stressed the importance the Forum places on our relationship with the Metropolitan Police, having recently appointed Diana James as the Forum’s Police Liaison Lead.
Tackling the hate crime directed at our community, particularly trans women, is a major issue and we feel the key areas for the Met’s policing to be effective relies on engendering trust and confidence within our community, so we feel we can come forward to report hate crime.
Our suggestions are:
This irreverent Canine Cabaret is engaging and terrific fun from its very first bark.
Trudy Howson, our Co-Chair, reviewed this show at the Pleasance Theatre (on until 19 December 2021).
We must remember and teach our Black history throughout the year, not just every October.
The Mayor of London has announced a new partnership between City Hall and The Black Curriculum, an education which aims to address the lack of Black British history on the UK curriculum.
Throughout the recent crisis in Afghanistan, Stonewall have called for international support for LGBTQ+ Afghans, and for their recognition as a priority group for resettlement in the UK. Under the current regime, they face persecution, torture and a very real risk to their lives.
They have now confirmed that the first 29 LGBTQ+ Afghans have arrived in Britain to begin new lives free from persecution.
Stonewall have been working closely with the Foreign Office and Rainbow Railroad to support LGBTQ+ Afghans to find passage to safety. The UK is playing a world-leading role in these efforts, and we hope these arrivals will be the first of many.
Dame Inga Beale, chair of the HIV Commission and Michael Gove MP, minister for the Cabinet Office.
Senior government ministers have backed a plan developed by an independent group, the HIV Commission, to eliminate HIV transmission in England over the next decade.
At a launch event on 1 December 2020, Health Secretary Matt Hancock committed to reducing new cases by 80% by 2025 and to less than 100% a year by 2030. He claims that these goals are achievable.
Lisa Power, a British sexual health and LGBT rights campaigner, has been awarded a prestigious DIVA Award.
See the Awards Ceremony held on 29 April 2021.
A video made by Year 6 of St Clement Danes Primary School with digital:works.
The video is 25 minutes long and interviews some familiar Covent Garden faces about the history of the area. It also includes some original photos and videos of Covent Garden through the decades.
Tonic has launched the sales of their older person’s shared ownership properties at Tonic@Bankhouse, marking a historic moment in LGBT+ housing history.
This is a significant milestone for LGBT+ community-led housing for older people, which has before now, struggled to get a permanent foothold in the UK. Read More
The official opening took place on 20 September 2021.
The House of St Barnabas is one of the Forum's partners but during the Covid-19 pandemic they have experienced the retreat of essential Services, with GP appointments scarce, housing and benefits departments scaled back, and foodbanks overwhelmed. Their graduates have experienced sudden job losses, furlough on insecure income and anxiety about losing their homes.
They have seen the digital divide get much wider and deeper overnight. Digital has become the only way of accessing services at times and friends, family and even pub quizzes quickly moved online.
However, they need help to continue their vital work in breaking the cycle of homelessness, following the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic. The relationship between secure work and homelessness has never been more apparent.
See how you can help them.
The More in Common Network is a collection of groups across the UK working to promote Jo Cox's powerful more in common message in their communities.
Rainbow Crossings have been popping up all over London's roads over the last few years as a way to celebrate LGBT+ residents, workers, and visitors.
The UK’s first ever transgender flag pedestrian crossing has been unveiled in London.
It was launched on IDAHOBIT 2021 by Sutton Council and the Sutton LGBT Forum.
As part of Trans Day of Remembrance 2020, the London LGBT Forums Network and the Met LGBT Independent Advisory Group have published an article about the Met's recent decision to publish Trans Hate Crime statistics to the community for the first time.
Whilst we welcome this move from the Met and celebrate that it is a win for the community, we also remember that hate crime is a serious matter affecting many lives.
The Trans Hate Crime Report by Galop shows that:
Sunil Gupta has been using photography as a critical practice since the 1970s.
Subversive, impulsive, personal, and political, Gupta's socially engaged projects have focused on issues such as family, race, migration and the complexities and taboos of sexuality and homosexual life.
His work has been an inspiration for generations of photographic activists and LGBTQ+ rights campaigners.
His book From Here to Eternity traces Sunil Gupta’s life through his personal archive: the snapshots, postcards, letters, posters, and news clippings collected during his long career in photography and activism. See Autograph for further details and how to purchase this inspiring book investigates the question What does it mean to be a gay Indian man?
Westminster LGBT Forum was happy to support the proposal from the Aziz Foundation for a Mosque at the Trocadero in Piccadilly. If this application had been successful we would have welcomed them and their organisation to Soho, the heart of London’s LGBT+ community.
The application was later withdrawn but we would have been very happy to work with the Aziz Foundation to promote acceptance, respect, and tolerance across all of Soho’s diverse and wonderful communities.
Soho has a proud and historic tradition of accepting and welcoming people of all kinds from all over the world, and its communities are open minded and tolerant of all religions. We believed this proposal was very much in keeping with that tradition, and would have helped support Muslims living, working and visiting our very unique part of Westminster where they are currently poorly served.
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