Today, we welcome in Pride season when UNISON activists will again join Prides across every region and nation to celebrate our LGBT+ members and the wider community.
UNISON’s LGBT+ members bring so much to our union, and make it a diverse, wonderful organisation to join and to work for.
A year on from the last time I wrote about Pride month, it’s sad that such little progress has been made in our society and even worse, that in some ways, the UK government is taking huge leaps backwards.
One in five LGBT+ people have experienced a hate crime or incident because of their sexual orientation and/or gender identity in the last 12 months.
Attacks on and discrimination against LGBT+ people seem to constantly be on the rise, and Trans people are being used in a game of political football, with little regard for their feelings or their voices.
But within UNISON, we’ve a lot to be proud of. Our Trans equality training has been delivered to many branches and regions, with over 600 members now having taken part. Our trans activist network has doubled and are delivering a ‘train the trainer’ workshops for trans activists to keep up with the demand.
During LGBT+ history month in February, we lit up UNISON Centre in Pride colours and, as this year is UNISON’s Year of Black Workers, we celebrated our Black LGBT+ activists, both from our past and present.
So I want all our LGBT+ members to stay hopeful. UNISON is here, campaigning for urgent action by governments to combat rising inequality and to put adequate funding into specialist LGBT+ services.
We’re here, campaigning for the abolition of conversion therapy and to encourage inclusion, make more allies for the LGBT+ community and to always show solidarity.
Let’s be proud of our achievements over the years on LGBT+ inclusion, and make sure we keep equality at the heart of everything UNISON does.
Happy Pride season everyone. Stay fabulous.