Diversity LGBT The Party

The best of LGBT History Month from the Liberal Democrats

Each year we celebrate LGBT History Month. It’s a month for remembering and celebrating the achievements, contributions, and lives of LGBT people through history.

As we get to the close of the month, we wanted to turn the spotlight on some of the brilliant things Liberal Democrats have been doing to celebrate. Let us know who and what else we have missed and we’ll add them in!

  1. Lynne Featherstone’s LGBT History Month Piece

Kicking off LGBT History Month was Lynne Featherstone’s excellent piece on the party website. Lynne, who was the architect of same sex marriage, talked us through the progress we have made on LGBT rights in recent years – and celebrated the role our party has played in championing these rights. But Lynne also told us about the challenges we still face:

The fight for equality goes on.

Only recently, a report from Stonewall showed that 42% of LGBT+ students hide their identity, for fear of discrimination. One in eight trans people are physically attacked in their place of work. LGBT+ asylum seekers face a humiliating process to enter our country and many are turned away, to go back to countries where they face discrimination and jail sentences, simply for being who they are.

And also talked us through the things Liberal Democrat MPs, Peers and members are currently fighting for from Self ID to an LGBT+ issues featuring in the SexEd curriculum, to gender neutral bathrooms and school uniforms.

As Lynne Featherstone ended the piece: Trans Rights as Human Rights. Have a read of this powerful piece here.

2. Stephen Williams’ tweets and LGBT+ heritage sites blog

Stephen Williams was Bristols first openly gay MP, and served as the Member of Parliament for Bristol West 2005-2015.

Each day this February Stephen has been tweeting about #LGBTHistoryMonth, telling us a little about some iconic LGBT figures. From well known figures like Oscar Wilde and John Maynard Keynes, to the slightly less known, each day Stephen told us a little about people and how to find out more about them.

Stephen has also been sharing his LGBT+ heritage sites blog from 2018. As Stephen writes:

Many of the country houses and castles that I’ve visited in the last 40 years have been owned at some point by families with gay and lesbian characteristics. But guide books, exhibitions and human room guides have usually been silent about the sexual identity of former lords and ladies.  Often at best there were hints, nods and winks about a king’s “favourite” courtier, or a lord’s “eccentric” behaviour or a lady’s “close companion.”

It’s a really interesting read, and you can check it out here.

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