I have always been committed to promoting equality for all; whether I’m signing a Parliamentary motion on human rights abuses in a foreign country, campaigning for Show Racism the Red Card by getting my footy boots on or fighting for the posthumous rights of Alan Turing and other gay men like him. This is why I would like to highlight tomorrow as a special day.
Tomorrow (Thursday 17th May) is an important day in the calendar of LGBT communities all over the globe, it is IDAHO.
The International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia (IDAHO) got started officially in 2005 after a year-long campaign to spread the word and get people on board. The idea came about in 2004 as a celebration of the removal of homosexuality from the International Classification of Diseases of the World Health Organisation (WHO) in 1990, on the 17th May.
The organisers took the date of the removal and turned it into a celebration, now every year IDAHO is celebrated on 17th May. It’s incredible to think that just 22 years ago the World Health Organisation considered a gay man or woman to be mentally ill.
Thankfully times have changed and IDAHO has been paving the way as an international force by working with local groups over the world to reduce prejudice and promote LGBT causes. On IDAHO in 2005 the first public gay and lesbian demonstrations were held in China, Congo and Bulgaria while on IDAHO in 2006 Moscow held its first Gay Pride event. Organisations in over 70 countries now include IDAHO in there campaigning with many holding major events to recognise and celebrate it.
The Gay and Lesbian Foundation have a campaign this year entitled ‘Flying the Flag’. The initiative is a chance to show your support for IDAHO on 17th May by flying a Rainbow Flag or marking the day by taking positive action to celebrate lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans individuals and communities. I will be showing my support by changing my twitter and facebook profiles to the Rainbow Flag logo.
There will be many events held all over the North West and the UK, to see what is going on you can follow one of the links below: