Celebrating gender and diversity in our community

17 May 2017

Today we're celebrating International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia (IDAHOT). In collaboration with the University's Ally Network, we're recognising and embracing gender and sexual diversity in our community to create a stronger and more inclusive environment.

IDAHOT will focus on raising awareness of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Intersex and Queer (LGBTIQ) rights to draw the attention of policymakers, opinion leaders and the media to the violence and discrimination experienced by LGBTIQ people internationally. It serves as an opportunity for the LGBTIQ community to advocate their rights and promote supportive and inclusive cultural change.

Today, 17 May, is a significant date for the LGBTIQ community because it commemorates the day in 1990 that homosexuality was removed from the World Health Organisation’s list of diseases and mental illnesses. It acts as a reminder of the significant progress that has been made towards equality, but also of the work that still needs to be done. 

We're committed to creating an environment that is safe and inclusive for everyone and we're mindful of the challenges that members of our LGBTIQ community face. Our Ally Network provides pro-active structures for support, education and diversity awareness.

We’ll be flying the rainbow flag from the clock tower in the Quadrangle today, and we’re encouraging students and the community to come along at 12.30pm for a group photo which we'll share on social media to show our support of IDAHOT.

To gain some insight into the personal experiences of our LGBTIQ community, watch our video of staff and students who recently came together to answer questions you might be too afraid to ask. Watch as they reveal their experiences of coming out, relationships and which bathroom to use.

It’s not about generating empathy, I think it’s about knowledge. It’s actually about educating people and that’s what universities are all about.
Mark Smith, Executive Officer to Senate and Chair of the Ally Network

We’ll also be hosting ‘Don’t Dis mySexuality’ on the 24 May in partnership with the Disability at Work Network and the Ally Network.

Join us for a panel discussion with writer and performer Emily Dash, dancer and actor Daniel Monks, and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community activist and advocate Wilo Muwudda. The short films Marrow and The Cards I'm Dealt, both addressing the themes of disability and sexuality, will be screened.

Find out more about our inclusive values and discover how we're working to ensure everyone is accepted and has equal opportunities when it comes to education and employment in our university.

Find out more about our Ally Network.

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