17 May is International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia

IDAHO logoThe International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia (IDAHO) is celebrated around the world on 17 May each year. The day of protest began in 2004, and has been held every year since. This year, IDAHO events will be held in more than 60 countries. IDAHO aims to call respect for LGBT people worldwide and to highlight that homophobia and transphobia are shameful and must be fought against openly.

As part of IDAHO, actions will take place around the world. For example, a week-long programme of events will take place in Turkey, including queer pride marches and an international congress. A pride march will be held in Cambodia; there are events in Israel, Romania and Germany.

More than 150 events mark IDAHO across France, including a national conference on Religions, Homophobia and Transphobia, with high level representatives of the Catholic, Protestant, Jewish and Muslim faiths, and the launch of a National Campaign against Homophobia in all secondary schools across the country. Check out the Campaign website for more info on this.

Meanwhile, here in the UK, there is once again an impressive programme of action on the IDAHO menu with events in Coventry, Manchester, Liverpool, Norwich, Taunton and Bristol, to name but a few; whilst in Scotland, events are confirmed for Glasgow, Edinburgh and Dundee. Check out all the details on the IDAHO website.

Great Global Kiss-In logoIn London, the Central London Humanist Group and the Gay And Lesbian Humanist Association are organising a Kiss-in & Hug-in Against Homophobia and Transphobia as part of the Great Global Kiss-in (an official project by IDAHO and Gays.com) – there are more details on the London Kiss-in & Hug-in Against Homophobia and Transphobia Facebook page.

And in Sheffield, the Centre for HIV and Sexual Health and Sheffield City Council are arranging a One Minute ‘Noise’ on Monday 17 May. A number of key speakers will be present to pledge their support and call for an end to homophobia and transphobia worldwide. This event will take place at The Peace Gardens commencing at 5.30pm, the one-minute noise will take place around 6.00pm and everyone is welcome to attend. As the theme is ‘Sheffield In The Pink’ the organisers are encouraging people to bring pink flags, streamers etc, or wear an item of pink clothing to the event.

All these activities and initiatives are a very strong signal to all – decisions makers, public opinion, civil rights movements, human rights defenders, etc – throughout the world that LGBT peoples’ fights for our rights should not be dismissed or ignored.