Updated: Feb 7
Why has this happened?
LGBT people have often hidden themselves in society for their own safety and have also frequently been ignored by others for their achievements and contributions. The month will begin to rectify that.
Why do we need to do this?
Because the lives and achievements of LGBT people have been hidden, it has been easy for others to stereotype and distort the reality of their lives. From this ignorance comes the prejudice that shows itself in homophobic bullying and negative discrimination. By presenting an honest appraisal of LGBT lives we seek to replace ignorance with knowledge and understanding.
Where did the idea for an LGBT History Month come from?
An LGBT History Month was first initiated in the USA in the month of October 1994. LGBT History Month UK was initiated by Schools OUT in February 2005. Both were based on the creation of the highly successful Black History Month which first occurred in the UK in October 1987 (Black History Month USA takes place in February).
Who are Schools OUT and why did they decide to do it?
Schools OUT is the thirty two year old organisation – originally called the Gay Teachers’ Group – that works for LGBT equality in education. It is an entirely voluntary organisation that survives on affiliation, donation and subscription. For further information, see www.schools-out.org.uk. By working in education in its widest sense and with school curricula in particular, they recognised that LGBT lives were hidden, disguised or ignored. They felt that this could only encourage the ignorance and prejudice that all their work seeks to challenge and therefore the creation of the LGBT History Month UK was an extension of that work.
Who runs LGBT History Month now?
LGBT History Month is run by a voluntary steering group but local organisations and individuals are invited to create their own events.