WATCH: 2017 Pride in Hull video
UK Pride event took place in Hull on Saturday as the city kicked off a week-long celebration to mark 50 years since homosexuality was decriminalised in the UK.
August marked the 50th anniversary of the 1967 Sexual Offences Act, which officially decriminalised homosexuality. Whilst we still have a long way to go in terms of equality, there are some fantastic LGBT opportunities and services on offer across the city.
As LGBT 50 draws to a close, we caught up with Andy Train, Chair of Hull and East Riding of Yorkshire LGBT Forum.
This month marks the 50th anniversary of the 1967 Sexual Offences Act, which officially decriminalised homosexuality. Whilst we still have a long way to go in terms of equality, there are some fantastic LGBT opportunities and services on offer across the city.
“The LGBT Forum acts as a networking opportunity for everyone who is interested in supporting or being a part of the LGBT community,” Andy explains. “This applies whether you’re a local business, organisation or an individual.”
They meet every second Wednesday of the month at The Guildhall in Hull from 6:30pm to 8:30pm. Usually, the forum consists of a speaker, followed by any updates from each organisation and then a 15-minute networking session.
“Everyone is welcome to come along, you don’t have to be a member, just rock up and join in,” Andy continues. “We have around 30 attendees at the moment, including the local authorities from Hull City Council and East Riding Council.”
Services are provided for a wide array of groups, including bisexuals, BME, trans, non-UK residents, men, women, young people and people over 50, just to name a few.
Their key areas of work range from advice, information and drop-in services, to representation and training. The public Facebook group, in the meantime, offers online support and a safe space for the community to connect.
Over at the University of Hull, there are several ways to get support and become involved in LGBT activity.
Firstly, the LGBT+ Liberation Campaign, which is one of many campaigns within the Hull University Union Welfare and Community Zone, represents all of the LGBT+ students at the University. As the HUU LGBT+ Officer, Connor Massey regularly attends the LGBT Forum.
“We work closely with the LGBT+ student and staff network to find out what issues we need to raise at Student Council meetings,” explains Connor.
“We also host community events. These are a great way to meet other LGBT+ people. Otherwise, we organise fundraising activities for LGBT+ related charities and put on talks that focus on relevant issues and history.”
Some of the important changes that the Liberation Campaign has brought about is gender neutral toilets within the Union building, and an awareness of LGBT+ people in campus sports.
Furthermore, the Equality, Diversity and Inclusion team at the University of Hull supports both staff and students.
“We work with Connor and external organisations to see what the university should be doing in terms of LGBT+ equality,” explains Beverley Palmer, an EDI Advisor.
“The university has worked closely with the Pride in Hull team and this year we were really proud to sponsor the 2017 event.”
“The staff LGBT Network, the Hull University Union LGBT Network, Hull University Union and the University Equality, Diversity and Inclusion team have all worked together to support LGBT 50.”
For more information about the Hull and East Riding of Yorkshire LGBT Forum, please visit the LGBT Consortium website. Meanwhile, if you’re a University of Hull student, you can get in touch with Connor Massey at firstname.lastname@example.org.