Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Trans Members
The NASUWT has a range of campaigns and activities supporting LGBT members. The National LGBT Advisory Committee has informed policy development on LGBT issues, including civil partnerships, working with key national partners including Stonewall through the Education for All coalition and the provision of guidance on tackling homophobic bullying and the implications of the 2010 Equality Act.
Events for LGBT Members
This year's LGBT Teachers' Conference took place on the evening of 12 February and Saturday 13 February, at the Holiday Inn hotel in Birmingham City centre. The Conference dinner, on Friday evening, was followed by a talk from Shaun Dellenty, inspirational founder of Inclusion for All and Pride Hero 2015.
The Conference was, once again, interactive, with a variety of keynote speakers and workshops on Pay Discrimination, Wellbeing, Assertiveness, Tackling Biphobia, Teaching in Primary Schools and Trans Awareness. The Conference Declaration will appear here soon.
TUC LGBT Conference 2015
The 2015 conference took place on the 25-26 June 2015. The NASUWT's composited motion, on 'Discrimination in survivor benefits', was balloted highest, for the second year running, and will now go forward to Trades Union Congress in Brighton, 13 - 16 September. Lee Williscroft-Ferris was re-elected, unopposed, to TUC LGBT Committee. There is an online petition calling for the government to stop the discrimination. Please sign it here (new page) and forward it to friends, family and colleagues to get them involved in this very important campaign.
In a by-election held in the autumn term 2015, Debbie Hayton was also elected to the TUC LGBT Committee.
International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia
The International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia (IDAHOT) is a Civil Awareness Day that is celebrated on May 17th. It is coordinated by the Paris-based 'IDAHOT Committee', founded by French academic Louis-Georges Tin. The day aims to coordinate international events to garner support for the respect of lesbian, gay and trans rights worldwide. May 17 was chosen as the day of the event because homosexuality was removed from the International Classification of Diseases of the World Health Organisation (WHO) on this date in 1990.
In commemorating IDAHOT this year, the NASUWT sends a message of solidarity and support to all those continuing to fight the disease of homophobia, transphobia and biphobia at home and around the world.
Training and Development
The NASUWT provides a development course specifically aimed at LGBT members interested in getting involved in the Union. This course for LGBT members is available at some regional centres and at the Union's Headquarters (HQ) in Rednal, Birmingham, B45 8RS. The next LGBT Members' Development Course is on the 27 February 2016 in Scotland (for members in Scotland), followed by 7 May, 2016, at HQ, Hillscourt Education Centre, Rednal, Birmingham. A further course is being held on the 16 July 2016 at the North East Regional Centre.
The NASUWT also runs a professional seminar for LGBT teachers entitled ‘Out and Safe’, which considers issues facing LGBT teachers and relevant legal protections. For further information, contact the NASUWT, email: email@example.com or tel: 03330 145550.
Have your say on issues affecting LGBT teachers.
Support for LGBT members on Domestic Violence
International Day Against Homophobia
The NASUWT marks each year the International Day Against Homophobia (IDAHO) (new window) on 17th May, reaffirming the Union’s unshakable belief that that all human beings are born equal and that by defending the rights of other human beings we help make the world a better place. As a trade union, we have a duty to champion equality, not just at home but around the world, and we will do this tirelessly. We still have a long way to go and that’s why today is so important.
It is a disgrace that in 70 countries it is still a criminal offence to be gay. Men, women and children face systemic harassment, intimidation, violence, ostracism, hate crimes - and in seven countries death – simply because of their sexual orientation. The union is proud of its work across the globe alongside sister unions to fight the disease of homophobia,
The NASUWT supports Education International's call for governments to honour the obligations outlined in the UN Vienna Declaration and Plan of Action (UN VDPA, June 1993).
The Vienna UN World Conference on Human Rights (1993) was a vital step forward in recognising human rights. During the conference, lobbied for by civil society organisations, the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Right (OHCHR) was created. The OHCHR has since successfully addressed discrimination against LGBT people.
In March 2012, the first formal UN debate on LGBT issues was held at the Human Rights Council in Geneva. The UN resolution, “Human Rights, Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity”, adopted by the Human Rights Council (17 June 2011), commissioned the UN report, “Discriminatory laws and practices and acts of violence against individuals based on their sexual orientation and gender identity”. The report, released by the OHCHR, outlines “a pattern of human rights violations… that demands a response”, and says governments have too often overlooked violence and discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.
At an international level, the rise in conservatism - and fundamentalism in certain countries - is a matter of concern. Some States, conservative and religious groups are blocking the realisation of human rights for all by making statements that seek to weaken the human rights language enshrined in previous agreements. They have opposed provisions which would have further enhanced the set of measures against gender-based violence and further enshrined sexual and health rights, LGBT rights or migrant rights.
Today, some States seek to manipulate the words of the Vienna Declaration to give them the exact opposite meaning than intended. Instead of the ‘universality’ of human rights, they speak of ‘universally recognised’ human rights, seeking to exclude those they do not recognise.
Additionally, they invoke the principle of ‘non-discrimination’, and then explain why this principle does not apply to LGBT people. Appeals to ‘traditional values’ are increasing, substituting cultural relativism for universal standards.
Social reforms, such as same-sex marriage, newly adopted in Britain and France, have aroused strong opposition from conservative and religious groups.
All Governments should comply with the obligations in the Declaration as they have been affirmed by the UN as universal, indivisible and consistent with all human rights.
EI calls on all members to defend, and expand, trade union rights, including the freedom of expression and peaceful assembly for all, including LGBT people.
LGBT History Month
Each year the month of February is Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans History Month (new window), which celebrates the lives and achievements of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans (LGBT) community. It is also an opportunity to raise awareness of the history of the LGBT movement, its fight for equality and to campaign for an end to discrimination in society and the workplace.
The NASUWT believes that all pupils, students and staff in schools and colleges have a right to work and learn in a safe and secure environment where they feel valued and respected. That is why the union is committed to a zero-tolerance approach to bullying and to supporting schools and colleges in their efforts to tackle the problem.
The theme for the 2014 History Month was music and was an excellent opportunity to showcase the work of LGBT musicians throughout the world. LGBT History Month 2013 was dedicated to maths, science and engineering and celebrated the work of Alan Turing, World War Two code breaker and pioneer of computer science. The NASUWT supported a number of events across the country to mark the month.
LGBT History Month 2015 was launched at the The Museum of the Order of St. John on the 18 November 2014 with NASUWT supporting the event both financially and by having a presence at the event. It was an extremely well attended and successful occasion. Music was provided by Diversity Choir and Champagne Charlie and the contribution of LGBT people to World War One was acknowledged with extracts from 'For The Trumpets Shall Sound'. The theme for 2015 is 'History', an excellent opportunity for teachers to promote and expound LGBT contributions to the past.
The NASUWT sponsors Pride Games (new window). The Games are the largest LGBT sports event in the UK and bring together hundreds of LGBT people and friends to compete and try new sports. Pride Games seeks to encourage open and active participation of the LGBT community in the sporting world and in the wider community, to inform and engage in policy and sports development, and to support the representation of LGBT athletes and LGBT sports in the wider community. During the Olympics the NASUWT sponsored Pride House, which was a space at the Games to celebrate LGBT sporting achievements.
All the links below open in new windows.
Lesbian and Gay Parents in Leeds and York
Pride Sports Trust
Gender Identity Research & Education Society (GIRES)
International Lesbian and Gay Association (ILGA)
ILGA Europe Region
TUC LGBT Pages
UK Lesbian and Gay Immigration Group
Information and Publications
- Teachers Pensions' Latest
- Teachers' Pay
- NASUWT Campaigns
- End Discrimination In Survivor Pensions - Sign the petition
- Tackling homophobic bullying
- Equality for Trans Teachers (England)
- Equality for Trans Teachers (Northern Ireland)
- Equality for Trans Teachers (Scotland)
- Equality for Trans Teachers (Wales - bilingual)
Pride 2015 (new page)
Click the above link for a comprehensive list of Pride events around the UK. NASUWT has a presence at many of these events. For more information on how you can attend as a representative of NASUWT, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
World AIDS Day
‘World AIDS Day' is held on the 1st December each year. It is an international day to raise awareness about HIV & AIDS around the world. The first 'World AIDS Day' was held in 1988. More than 100,000 people are living with HIV in the UK and recent rises in infection rates should concern all those fighting for better health and education outcomes. Worldwide 33.4million people are living with HIV and the red ribbon is worn as a sign of support. The red ribbon has been an international symbol of AIDS awareness since 1991.
The NASUWT has been working with the National Aids Trust (NAT) to call for an end to discrimination in schools. The NAT has produced a resource for teachers, providing innovative and simple ideas to get students thinking and talking about HIV. The NASUWT supports the right of children and young people to evidence-based education on HIV and other sexually-transmitted infections.
Because discrimination remains a reality for many people living with HIV, World AIDS Day is a timely reminder that there is still a desperate need to raise HIV and AIDS awareness, fight prejudice and improve education for all. NASUWT is involved in a number of Pride events this year. Pride marches and parades celebrate LGBT culture. Most Pride events occur annually and many take place around the summer months to commemorate the Stonewall riots, a pivotal moment in the modern LGBT rights movement.
Education For All
The NASUWT is a member of the Education for All Coalition (new window). Homophobic bullying causes permanent damage to young people and blights the schools and colleges where it takes place. Making all young people - regardless of their sexuality - feel included and valued is a major opportunity for the educational system to transform the lives of a significant number of pupils and students. The aim of Education for All is to ensure that all young lesbian, gay and bisexual (LGB) people can fulfil their potential, and that the UK’s schools and education systems can deal appropriately with homophobia and homophobic bullying.
The NASUWT worked in partnership with Stonewall to support the distribution of The School Report (new window) to schools in England and Wales. This publication detailed the experiences of young gay people in Britain's schools. Stonewall also produced The Teachers Report (new window) on the findings of the YouGov poll of over 2,000 primary and secondary teachers and other school staff on their perspective on homophobic bullying in schools.
Schools can access tailored support, training and resources to challenge homophobic bullying with the launch of Stonewall's School Champions programme (new window). Schools which sign up to the Schools Champions programme will receive Stonewall resources and have access to a range of training opportunities for school staff.
A new guide for school leaders on tackling homophobic bullying has also been launched by the charity. Effective School Leadership (new window) offers advice on developing good practice and gaining the support of colleagues and parents in tackling homophobia.
The Terrence Higgins Trust has a teaching pack Out in School (new window) providing teachers with ideas on how to talk about sexual orientation and challenge homophobia in schools. The pack has been written by teachers for teachers and contains ideas that can be used across the curriculum.
Bi Visibility Day
Message from Stonewall:
23 September marks Bi Visibility Day.
It is known that bi people suffer from dual prejudice – both from within the LGBT community and outside of it. Bi Visibility Day should not be used as one day to address a call to action. It should serve as a reminder that we must all tackle bi erasure, bi invisibility and biphobia whenever we witness it.
From avoiding prides and LGBT events because of the fear that you and your partner won’t be accepted, to being told you’re ‘confused’ when accessing healthcare services, we know there’s a long way to go until all bi people can feel able to be themselves. In the workplace alone, we know that bi people are significantly less likely to feel comfortable being out to their colleagues when compared to lesbian and gay employees. There’s been some great steps forward in society’s attitude towards gay people in recent years and there’s a lot further to go, but we all need to do more to make sure that bi people’s stories are told and celebrated.
But how can we do this?
Learn about how to support bi equality at work, and how to tackle myths and assumptions.
Be visible in your support for bi equality. You could don purple this Bi Visibility Day, or grab yourself a ‘Some People Are Bi. Get Over It!’ tee from us.
Know that this is more than just one day in the calendar year. We must continue to work together to secure equality for the bi community.
At Stonewall, we believe in acceptance without exception, and we understand that there is not one lived way of being L, G, B, or T. We’re committed to ensuring that every person is free to be themselves without fear of isolation.
As well as marking Bi Visibility Day next week across social media, we’ll continue to put the voices of bi people at the heart of what we do. Stonewall will continue to platform bi role models, and you can let us know if you’d like to share your story too.
And we hope that you’ll pledge your support to bi equality, whether as an ally or as a role model to others. We hope you enjoy a very happy, and purple, Bi Visibility Day.
You can learn more about Bi Visibility Day by visiting BiVisibilityDay.com.