Disability Equality Forum

Disability Equality Forum

LGBT ForumMeeting Notes

Forum Focus: N/A

11thFebruary 2015




12 students


4 staff

Welcome and Introduction

Nigel Harris– executive director is chairing the meeting, briefly outlinesthe forumand both students and staff introduce themselves.

Notes from last meeting and matters arising

First LGBT forum taking place at WMC

Purpose and remit of the group - discussion

Everyone to be treated the same

Need for a safe place

Own space – why is it important

Group/ Campaigning

Forum to be a safe place – support LGBT

Alliance – to share with people who are not LGBT

Teaching others – to help reduce prejudice and hate crime

Support group – Communicating LGBT to others

LGBT estimated that 90% people think it is a choice, so why do people choose to reject it.

Many people still don’t come out because of fear of hate crime. One day there is hope that a space is not needed

Chandrani felt that all it is, is ignorance. She added that it isn’t a choice but hormonal and that there is a lack of knowledge.

The overall feeling is that the forum is a good idea. It will be a place to feel comfortable, safe as well as meeting other people. Quizzes can be held and feelings, thoughts and experiences discussed

The pub ‘The Black Cup’ was discussed on how that the owners are trying to sell up and make it into flats.

Evaluation of LGBT* History Month at the College - Discussion

LGBT Month – Heighten Awareness

Well-advertised? – It was suggested there should be more notice

10 years since the programme started

Faith in LGBT - Friday

Open Information Fair held last week

Chandrani felt that unfortunately there are still a lot of cultures that are not interested. Need to educate

QDP – Questions concerning individual’s sexuality has been introduced. Interesting feedback from lower level English

Ali reported that LGBT screen information around the college has had a good impact on learners

IS asks if everyone feels the college is inclusive

Diversity – Everyone is happy

Calendar of Inclusion – Series of activities celebrating various Equality/Diversity, including International Women’s Day, Black History Month, LGBT, EID and Persian New Year. Last year we realised we covered most things with the exception of LGBT.

Government funded, Crafting Languages is a course running on Fridays. History of Polari which was secretivelanguagewidely used by the British gay community in 1950’s 60’s,

LGBT rights first came to prominence following the decriminalisation of same-sex sexual activity across the UK between 1967 and 1982. There were still groups that were illegal in Britain until 2002

Film review competition – There will be a list of films to choose from to watch and write a review. Classes will be invited to take part in the competition and the winners will receive cinema tickets for the whole class and teacher. Films include a 1919 silent film called different from the others about a violinist who falls in love with one of his students, the aim of presenting the story as apolemicagainst the then-current laws under Germany'swhich madehomosexualitya criminal offense.

A discussion of Polari language (British Gay Slang) and the definitions of certain words. Naff meaning ‘not available for afxxk’ and Varda to mean ‘pretty’.

A conversation about Gay hankycodes was had. The Hanky Code is a traditional form of signalling to others what your sexual preferences and interests are. Gay men used this code to communicate with each other in the noisy and distracting environment of gay bars. Although not as widely used these days.It was used as an underground language to prevent them getting arrested, undercover policemen were sent out to toilets to proposition people.

Therainbow flag, commonly thegay pride flagand sometimes theLGBT pride flag, is a symbol oflesbian,gay,bisexual, and transgender(LGBT) pride andLGBT social movements. The flag consists of eight stripesand each colour has a specific meaning.

Alan Turing was prosecuted in 1952 forhomosexual acts, when such behaviour was stillcriminalised in the UK. He accepted treatment withoestrogeninjections (chemical castration) as an alternative to prison. Turing died in 1954, fromcyanidepoisoning. An inquest determined his death a suicide. Recently pardoned by the queen.


May 17th – International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia

Student Newsletter – LGBT liaison officer to be mentioned

Human Selfie – Expressing views, sent to email addresses.

Creating an environment to feel safe and happy - progress

Safeguarding Policy – support in helping people feel safe and happy.

Chandrani requested the possibility of ‘Crafting Language’ course dates to be extended to longer than 6 weeks.

No discrimination is to be tolerated

Next Meeting:

Date of next forum - TBC

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