Monday, 13 January 2014

Stonewall try and fail to be inclusive

Today Stonewall launch their campaign to tackle homophobia in work. There are four poster designs, though by looking at their website you would think that there are only three. Two are all male with the headline "One is Gay". There is a lesbian version but this morning it took many LGBT activists some time to locate it.

There is one woman that Stonewall are happy to promote on their posters about this campaign. She is a police officer who appears with a male colleague under the title "One is bisexual". So the women may actually be the straight one on that poster, after all we are assuming that the other one is, unless she is a lesbian and her male colleague is the bisexual.

However, what many campaigners including myself picked up on the bisexual poster is that apart from the title you would not know that Britain's "self-proclaimed" leader in the LGB rights

The text underneath all four designs is the same.

At Stonewall we've campaigned for 25 years for equality. We've had major successes with legaslising same-sex marriage, repealing section 28 and lifting the ban on gay people serving in the military. But 99% of young gay people still regularly hear homophobic language in school, 100 homophobic hate crimes are reported to the police every week and 2.4 million people have witnessed homophobic bullying at work in the past 5 years.
Lots done. Lots to do.
Yes even when  Stonewall try and be inclusive in their poster campaign they fail within the text. They focus only on the G, hide away the L, fail to recognise the different problems faced by the B, and as for the T as usual with Stonewall they don't get a look in.

They are also taking credit for same-sex marriage, which they were opposed to in 2010 even as the Liberal Democrats passed as Federal Policy in support of it.

There are many harping away about how fantastic this campaign is. Sadly it is more fan'as'ic and fails from its outset to be a diversity inclusive at it appears on a quick scan of the posters.

While we do need to end homophobic bullying, and biphobic, we also need to address transphobic. The Stonewall riots saw the transexuals stand alongside the Lesbians, Gays and Bisexuals in countering the police brutality. But Stonewall UK (itself a misnomer due its lack of action on Northern Ireland) fail to live up to the name it bears by constantly getting the full range of those who made at stand at the Stonewall Inn in New York's Greenwich Village.

Looks like those of us who get the full spectrum of sexuality and identity will once again had to pick up the pieces that the UK most high profile organisation that many few as standing for LGBT rights fails to pick up and run with.

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