Luke Pollard, MP for Plymouth Sutton & Devonport has joined other LGBT MPs to promote schools diversity week
Schools across the country have signed up to Schools Diversity Week which is a celebration of LGBT and equality in education. Running from 3rd July to 7th July the event was organised by Just Like Us an LGBT Charity set up to empower and support young people.
“Growing up LGBT is incredibly difficult for some young people. Young people can often they feel isolated and alone and feel that they have no-one to talk to. We need to make sure young people have positive stories about being LGBT from people from all walks of life, that can inspire them and make them feel valued.”
Diversity week puts the power in the hands of secondary pupils who can plan events in their school. It helps break the silence that can sometimes surround being LGBT and can provide a support network of their peers making school a positive environment for LGBT teens.
Just Like Us is building a national network of university student volunteers, giving them the skills they need to communicate with impact, and sending them into secondary schools to share their stories, bust stereotypes, and explain why LGBT+ equality is everyone's issue.
Plymouth is a welcoming and increasingly diverse city. Fighting for LGBT young people to have the same rights and opportunities as anyone else is a core part of Luke’s approach as your MP. No one should be left behind.
More information and how to join up can be found here.
Discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation and gender identity are facts of life for the 150,000 (or more) lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT+) pupils in UK secondary schools: 25% attempt suicide, 50% self harm and 96% still hear homophobic remarks.
These negative experiences undermine aspiration, reduce performance and limit the potential of LGBT+ pupils. Schools remain uncertain about how best to teach and support all pupils about LGBT+ issues.
In the workplace, too, LGBT+ young people often lack the confidence to be themselves, with 35% of 18-29 year old LGBT+ people not out to any colleagues.