In a time that seems as if progressive steps are being made to further LGBTI rights, individuals face assault out of the media spotlight. These struggles therefore go unnoticed and unrecognized. LSESU Amnesty International will host a range of events to bring attention to this plight. Here is how you can engage in the discussion!
Monday, January 18: LGBTI Right and Religion panel discussion
6.30p in 32 Lincoln’s Inn G.03
Respecting the role of religion in secular states plays an important role in maintaining a cohesive multicultural society, thus fueling the debate on the rights underlying same-sex marriage. The dichotomy of valuing marriage as a legal institution versus a religious institution consequently becomes a key point in the discussion of accommodating an individual’s rights within and outside of religion.
Members of multiple religious communities will gather to discuss the various supportive and opposing views taken on homosexuality within their respective religions. Topics that will be discussed include issues regarding being LGBTI and religious, the challenges that people face within their faith communities, and support that can be offered to them.
Jeremy Marks, a gay evangelical Christian and founder of Courage UK. Courage was initially an ex-gay ministry, but went through a metamorphosis after 2000 to become pro-gay. He wrote about his experience in “Exchanging the Truth of God for a Lie.” Marks says he will bring a few copies of the book to the panel, so make sure to attend!
Tehmina Kazi, director of British Muslims for Secular Democracy. She is dedicated to the promotion of inclusive religious spaces.
Sohail Ahmed, a gay activist who was a closeted extremist gay Muslim. He is very active in the media and recently appeared on the BBC3 documentary “Reggie Yates’ Extreme UK: Gay and Under Attack.”
Alison Walsh, parent of Jewish gay and member of Parents of Jewish Gays and Lesbians.
Tuesday, January 19: “Am I Safe Now?”: LGBTI Asylum-Seekers in the UK panel discussion
6.30p in Tower Two 1.04
Homosexuality is still a crime in 75 countries, of which 5 still sentence gay people to death. More and more people are fleeing their countries of origin to seek asylum based on the grounds of persecution for sexual identity.
However, these individuals’ struggles do not end there. As they reach many states in Europe, LGBTI asylum-seekers often endure humiliating and intimate questioning based on insensitive stereotyping in order to “prove” their sexuality. In the context of the current refugee crisis, the plight of many LGBTI asylum-seekers remains neglected.
Paul Dillane, Executive Director of UK Lesbian and Gay Immigration Group
Debora Singer, policy and research manager from Asylum Aid
PJ Samuels, activist, poet and refugee from Jamaica
Come check out these engaging and informative events! If you can’t make it, keep up to date through the blog!
Megan Erickson, Staff Writer