May 16, 2013

Press Statement on the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia





Today, the 17th May, We Are: The University of Malta LGBTQQI Organisation is marking the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia (IDAHO).
We Are has released a series of posters which show that anyone can stand against homophobia and transphobia. The posters depict students, lecturers, parents, and activists speaking out against homophobia, biphobia and transphobia.  The posters share positive messages about love and include slogans such as:  “You don’t have to be gay to support the cause”, “Our children’s sexuality doesn’t stop us from loving them unconditionally” and “Don’t let anyone define who you are, just be yourself”.
We Are will also be giving out carnations in the annual Flowers of Friendship event.  We’ll be handing out flowers at Giovanni Curmi Higher Secondary School, at Junior College, and at the University of Malta.  The action symbolizes our willingness to create bridges  and build dialogue with students about the importance of accepting people just the way they are, and the negative effects of homophobic and transphobic language and behaviour.   We are happy about the positive support received from the principals of Junior College and Giovanni Curmi Higher Secondary School and hope both sixth forms will continue to strive towards more inclusive and supportive environments for their students.
Gaby Gauci, Vice President of We Are says “we have taken positive steps this year towards some real change and have received great feedback in this respect.  Our campaign generated a lot of interest and is helping to raise awareness.  It’s nice to see parents being supportive, as well as straight friends and allies.”
Brenda Cutajar, Events Officer for We Are adds “On Sunday we organized a sports event to combat homophobia in sports. Unfortunately sports is one environment which is very hostile to LGBTQQI people and through our friendly sports events, which are open to all, we try to create a space where anyone can play sports and not feel pressured.”






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