News archive 2009
No extra funding from either Calderdale PCT or Calderdale Children and Young People's Service, despite publication of "Ten Years On…" report. Submission of funding to Commission for Human Rights and Equality for GALYIC Participation Youth Worker unsuccessful; reason given: insufficient evidence of need (despite findings of interviews with 50 members). Successes
As well as the 49 weekly youth groups and drop-ins, here are some of the GALYIC highlights of 2009: January: Jeni sharing her experiences of homophobic bullying at the relaunch of Calderdale's third party reporting centres. February: Member presentation at Schools Out Conference in London.
Launch to 100 professionals of "Ten Years On: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Young People in Calderdale" report which shows LGBT young people highly vulnerable whilst at the same time majority of specialist and generic services not meeting their needs. March: Member presentation at national LGBT Probation Workers Conference in Leeds. April: Member presentation to Calderdale Children's Trust. Trust agrees to send letter to strategic heads to ask what actions they have taken in response to the findings in the report and report back by January 2010.
GALYIC residential at Borwick Hall; members agree list of statements they would like to say to parents; published on website. May: Start of training course aimed at raising awareness amongst parents of LGBT young people. June:Member presentation to Bradford and District CAMHS Network.
Member presentation to Calderdale Association of School Governors Board. July: Go karting.
Launch of Forum on website. August: GALYIC ten years old!
Self defence. September: Member presentation to Strategic Heads of Children's Services.
New venue for youth group.
GALYIC and Lesbian Information Service websites recognised by Youth Work Now. October: Launch of GALYIC Needs Assessment Tool (NAT) on line.
New Crisis Intervention Worker starts (thanks to BBC Children in Need).
Member presentation to Barnardos in Cardiff.
Calderdale Youth Offending Team second a worker to GALYIC for one day a week.
Re-launch of GALYIC Youth Council. November: Member presentation at LGBT History Month Prelaunch at British Museum in London.
Member presentation to Children and Young People's Scrutiny Panel. December: Three course Christmas dinner for members and staff, thanks to Unison who gave us a cheque for £300 as a result of presentation members gave at the Barnardos conference in Cardiff. Looking Forward to 2010
Equality Bill becomes law.
New duty on schools to record homophobic bullying.
Secure funding for GALYIC services and for Youth Participation Worker?
More services in Calderdale meeting the needs of LGBT young people?
More schools tackle homophobic bullying?
22nd December 2009
The Yorkshire Mixtures LGBT Youth Group in Batley have achieved the Philip Lawrence Award which honours the achievements of young people who have a positive impact on their community, their lives and the lives of others. Each year Awards are given in recognition of inspiring and innovative work led by young people for the good of the community across the UK and Northern Ireland. Each year the winning groups are awarded at a prodigious ceremony, where they are presented with a trophy and £1000 to invest continuing their work in their community. Click here to access further information.
21st December 2009
A new report on the use of alcohol and drugs amongst the LGBT population has just been published. Based on a variety of methods, including on-line survey, focus groups and working with local substance misuse treatment services, Berkeley Wilde of Minotaur Communications found that the majority of participants did not use alcohol or drug services. Click here to access report.
10th December 2009
The Department for Children, Schools and Families have begun a consultation exercise to gather the views of a wide range of stakeholders who work with local authorities, school staff and children and young people on bullying and staff grievance issues. This specific consultation is on the scope of the new duties to record all incidents of sexist, racist and homophobic bullying and how best to support schools in implementing them. Govenment wants to ensure that the new duties meet their central policy objective which is to keep school staff and pupils safe from bullying and harassment, while at the same time keeping any additional bureaucratic burdens on schools to a minimum. The closing date is 4th March 2010. Click here to take part in the consultation.
10th December 2009
To compliment other guidances on tackling various forms of bullying in schools, the Department for Children, Schools and Families has just released "Guidance for schools on preventing and responding to sexist, sexual and transphobic bullying - Safe to Learn: Embedding anti-bullying work in schools." Click here to access further information.
10th December 2009
As from September 2010 all schools in England will, by law, be required to record all racist, homophobic and sexist incidents of bullying, schools minister, Vernon Coaker announced today. A 12-week consultation period with schools, parents and education experts will begin today. Click here to access further information.
9th December 2009
Mohamad Caid, an illegal cab driver who preyed on young gay men leaving a London nightclub, has been found guilty of raping an 18 year old young gay man. John, the young gay man, has spoken out about his experience and advised other young gay men to make sure if they use a taxi that it is a black cab. Click here to access further information.
9th December 2009
The Tel Aviv LGBT youth centre, which was attacked by a gunman in August killing two people and leaving many injured, is being sued by fifteen-year-old Yonatan Buks. Yonatan's injuries remain severe and his ability to speak challenged. Buks's family lawyer Eitan Peleg said, "I am sure (the gay center) was full of good intentions, but when you take upon yourself such a huge responsibility, replace the parents, and take a child through an activity that holds danger it is your duty to get the parents' approval." Peleg continued, "The center functioned with an 'open door' policy, every Saturday at the same place and the same time, and without security cameras, an alarm, call buttons, or escape routes. We have all been exposed to the homophobia that runs rampant. You can start by closing the door." Click here to access further information.
25th November 2009
The London-based Gendered Intelligence, who work with transgender young people across Britain, is one of the six LGBT organisations to receive funding from the Commission for Equality and Human Rights. GALYIC have worked with Gendered Intelligence before and look forward to doing so again in the future. The other five LGBT recipients are Derbyshire Friend (£393K), the Equality Network, Scotland (£100K), LGBT Health Scotland (£85K), Stonewall (£147K) and the Lesbian and Gay Foundation, Manchester (£264K). GALYIC applied but were unsuccessful, the reason given was lack of evidence of need (despite the findings of 50 interviews with LGBT young people). Click here to access list of recipients.
21st November 2009
The report paints a sobering picture of the experiences of LGBT youth in delinquency courts. A significant percentage of youth in detention facilities, in some jurisdictions up to 13 percent, are LGBT, according to a recent study by Ceres Policy Research. Yet many juvenile justice professionals are simply unaware that LGBT youth exist, and are often treated unfairly in the system. Click here to access report.
21st November 2009
Members of the GALYIC presentation group went down to London on Thursday 19th November to give an 8 minute presentation about Anne Lister at the LGBT History Month Pre-Launch event held at the British Museum in London. We were the last presentation of the afternoon but were received extremely well (participants even laughed at the right places!!) The following morning we went to Gays The Word bookshop, then had a coffee in the Friends Meeting House before going to the British Library. Click here to access photos. Our presentation was filmed and should be appearing on the LGBT History Month website in the near future.
6th November 2009
About 150 young people filled out an informal online survey sponsored by Tulsa Reaches Out, an organization that promotes the social service needs of Tulsa's "LGBTQ" (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, questioning) community. More than 100 of them filled out the poll on computers at Openarms Youth Project, a center for gay, lesbian and bisexual youth and their supportive friends. Most of the respondents were anonymous, and 21 percent identified themselves as heterosexual. Sixty-seven percent of respondents reported having suicidal thoughts or feelings, and 39 percent said they had attempted suicide. About half of the respondents said they felt safe at school, and 34 percent said they did not. Half said they had been bullied at school Click here to access further information.
2nd November 2009
The report found there is a relationship between social work educators’ knowledge of LGBT issues and how prepared students are to work with LGBT populations. Nine percent reported unfamiliarity with sexual orientation issues, while 30% stated that they were not knowledgeable about gender identity/expression content. Of the programmess surveyed, 61% indicated there were no faculty development opportunities in the last 2 years to learn about sexual orientation or gender identity/expression issues and nearly a third of programme directors gave their faculty members a relatively low rating on knowledge about gender identity/expression. Recommendations from the report include: special efforts to increase the infusion of material about LGBT issues throughout the curriculum, especially topics about LGBT youth and transgender individuals; ensure that programmes have faculty members who are knowledgeable about LGBT issues and provide faculty development opportunities on these issues; and reward and foster LGBT focused scholarship. Click here to access further information.
2nd November 2009
A coalition of youth charities has published a report which highlights failures in NHS treatment for young people who self-harm. Youth charities 42nd Street, Depaul UK and YouthNet, found that both young people and health professionals were critical of NHS treatment of self-inflicted injuries. The survey also found that 20 per cent of respondents were under-16, despite the service being for over-16s, and 17 per cent of respondents described themselves as lesbian, gay or bisexual - more than three times the national average. Click here to access further information.
2nd November 2009
Beyond Blue is a national organisation in Australia which provides a national focus and community leadership to increase the capacity of the broader Australian community to prevent depression and respond effectively. It has recently developed a series of publications aimed at raising the profile of mental health amongst the LGBT population and provides various on-line resources. Click here to access further information.
22nd October 2009
The fourth National Survey of Australian Secondary Students, HIV/AIDS and Sexual Health has just been published. The findings include responses from 2926 students from years 10 and 11. Of these, 1% reported being attracted exclusively to people of the same sex, 6% were attracted to people of both sexes and approximately 2% were unsure about their sexual attraction. There were no significant differences in sexual attraction across year level or gender. Almost 1 in 10 students surveyed reported their most recent sexual encounter was with someone of the same sex. For young men, the likelihood of having a same sex encounter at the most recent sexual experience had increased from 2% in 2002 to 8% in 2008. Young men (8%) were more likely to have had sex with someone of the same sex compared with women (4%), but the difference was not statistically significant.
LGB YOUNG PEOPLE IN NEW ZEALAND AT HIGHER RISK OF SELF-HARM, ATTEMPTED SUICIDE, ALCOHOL AND DRUG USE, AND STIs THAN HETERSEXUAL YOUTH
21st October 2009
A report by the University of Auckland, entitled Results for Young People Attracted to Both Sexes, analyses data from Youth 07: The Health and Wellbeing Secondary School Students in New Zealand. The study included 8,002 secondary school students who responded to questions on sexual attraction, health and wellbeing. In the past 12 months more than a third of same/both-sex attracted secondary school students had seriously thought about attempting suicide and around half had deliberately harmed themselves. There were also elevated rates of alcohol and drug use, STIs and mental ill-health among same/both- sex attracted students in comparison to their opposite-sex attracted counterparts. Click here to access further information.
15th October 2009
Four members of the GALYIC presentation group gave a presentation at the Barnardo's LGBT conference in Cardiff on Thursday, 14th October to a rapturous response from delegates. Conference participants were particularly moved by the various personal stories members shared. We are hoping to continue to work with Barnardo's to help raise the needs of LGBT young people, especially with government.
11th October 2009
The number of young men who have HIV in Sydney, Australia, has doubled since 2007. Professor Susan Kippax, from the National Centre in HIV Social Research in Sydney said, "…[its] the first time I've seen that age group showing an increase for a very, very long time.'' Professor Kippax has urged the Victorian Government to invest more in prevention programs. Click here to access further information.
4th October 2009
GALYIC (Gay and Lesbian Youth in Calderdale) have joined up with ReSurv to make their Needs Assessment Tool (NAT), a comprehensive method of assessing the needs of LGBT young people, available for use by other LGBT groups and agencies. The on-line version of the NAT will be launched at the national LGBT Health Summit in Newcastle on 6th October. Click here for press release and here to access website.
22nd September 2009
Australia's largest advocacy body for suicide prevention has called on the mainstream health sector to address the alarming rates of suicide in the GLBT community. Suicide Prevention Australia this recently released a position statement on suicide and self-harm in GLBT communities. The document collates data and studies from the last 10 years to paint a dismal picture of mental health within the community - GLBT people are up to 14 times more likely to attempt suicide than their heterosexual counterparts and are more likely to perform acts of self-harm. Our youngest and oldest community members are the most vulnerable. Click here for a copy of position statement.
20th September 2009
The GALYIC presentation group gave a presentation to the heads of Calderdale Children and Young People's strategic partnerships at Heath Training Centre on Friday, 18th September. GALYIC members responded to questions and discussions about access to GPs, police response to homophobic hate incidents, support in schools, LGBT access to positive activites, homelessness, and appropriate support for LGBT young people who end up in A&E having self- harmed. Sue Rumbold, Head of Commissioning for Children's Services, agreed to look into the possibility of funding for GALYIC, whilst other strategic leads promised to get agencies to conduct service audits to find out if they are meeting the needs of LGBT young people. They will feed back responses to the January 2010 meeting of the Children's Trust. Click here for a copy of the Action Plan and Service Audit discussed at the meeting.
20th September 2009
As part of the preparations for developing an 8 minutes presentation about the life of Anne Lister, which will be presented at the British Museum in London on 19th November as part of the LGBT History Month Prelaunch, GALYIC members experienced a tour round Shibden Hall, Halifax. The presentation group met and interviewed local author and historian Helena Whitbread who has written two books about Anne Lister and is currently writing her full biography. Click here to order books from Amazon.
17th September 2009
The latest edition of the Journal of Adolescent Health (September 2009) includes the findings of research which has found that lesbian, gay and bisexual young people are at a higher risk of binge eating and purging than heterosexual youth and that this may start as early as 12 years of age Click here for further information, and here to access article.
14th September 2009
The first-phase report of The National Climate Survey on Homophobia in Canadian Schools is providing a data base remarkably similar to surveys in the United States and United Kingdom. 85 per cent of the respondents to the first phase of the online, anonymous survey are LGBTQ -- lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and questioning, the vast majority of whom reported verbal homophobic attacks in their high school, sometimes physical abuse, and could identify areas of their school where they don't feel safe, such as washrooms, gym change rooms, and hallways. Click here to access the report.
14th September 2009
The Home Office have today released The Hate Crime Action Plan which sets out how local organisations like the police and councils will get new advice on the best ways to deal with hate crime. This includes new guidance on preventing hate crime and a training toolkit for crime reduction bodies to improve the identification of and support for vulnerable witnesses. Click here to access press release; and here to access the Action Plan.
11th September 2009
In a very moving speech, relayed by the Telegraph, Gordon Brown has apologised for the way that Alan Turing, who broke the German enigma code which helped change the course of the Second World War, was treated because of his homosexuality. Turing killed himself after being arrested for being gay in 1952. Click here to access article and here to listen to a friend of his.
11th September 2009
Nursing Times reports on a one-stop sexual health service in a college in Chesterfield, set up in partnership between the education service, the youth service as well as Derbyshire sexual health promotion service which specialises in supporting gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender young people. Click here to access article.
11th September 2009
The BBC2 programme aimed at young people, Revealed, is talking about coming out in their next issue which will be aired this Saturday 12th September, 1.40pm The Revealed website includes a brief film about the experience of a young man (who didn't seem to have any problems coming out), whilst their article, Young people coming out earlier, tells a different story. There is also a link to a debate on Are you born gay? Held by the UK Youth Parliament. Thank god there are confident young gay members who are able to challenge the ignorance of many of the other members.
AUSTRALIAN RESEARCH FINDS LESBIAN AND BISEXUAL WOMEN MORE LIKELY TO USE ALCOHOL, TOBACCO AND ILLICIT DRUGS THAN HETEROSEXUAL WOMEN
2nd September 2009
A wellbeing survey conducted in Western Australia concludes that lesbian and bisexual women appear to use alcohol, tobacco and illicit drugs at higher rates than women generally, indicating that mainstream health promotion messages are not reaching this group or that this group are not perceived as relevant. There is an urgent need for public health practitioners working in the area of substance use to recognise that LBW drug consumption and use patterns are likely to be different to the wider population and that special considerations and strategies are required to address the unique and complex needs of this population. For more information click here.
2nd September 2009
The Irish Times has reported that the suicide rate in Ireland continues to decline. The highest rates are for young men aged between 20 and 24 years. Whilst Ireland is the sixth lowest for suicides in the European Union, for youth suicides it is the fourth highest. The National Office for Suicide Prevention held its fourth annual forum on suicide prevention in Dublin today. The afternoon session focussed on suicide prevention amongst the lesbian gay, bisexual and transgender community. Broadcaster Anna Nolan chaired the session, which included presentations from LGBT organisations and young people. Click here to access further information.
Would that England were as progressive! Instead, we get a one line mention in the Department of Health's "New Horizons, Towards a shared vision of mental health" consultation document. Click here to access the document, or here to take part in the consultation.
1st September 2009
The work of GALYIC's Jan Bridget has been recognised in a list of seven websites cited by Youth Work Now, the other websites belong to Stonewall, Queer Youth Network, LGBT Youth Scotland, Schools Out and Queery (London Lesbian and Gay Switchboard). The article states: "Researchers and practitioners looking to provide support to young women will want to take a look at www.lesbian informationservice.org. Run by well-known youth worker Jan Bridget, this may not be a sophisticated website but it is an important library of research and information on gay and lesbian issues and it tracks 22 years of campaigning and practical support. Bridget has catalogued a life's work here and while some of the material is of purely historical interest, it does show what can be achieved by committed campaigning. Bridget has also been a driving force behind Gay and Lesbian Youth in Calderdale and its site www.galyic.org.uk is an example of a local youth group providing a good source of information and support."
1st September 2009
Research by GLSEN (Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network), published in the August edition of Journal of Youth and Adolescence, suggests that LGBT young people who live in rural areas and in poorer areas are more likely to be bullied than those who live in cities and wealthier areas. Click here to access further information.
26th August 2009
Established by EACH (Education Action Challenging Homophobia), Reach has been awarded £391,668 by the Big Lottery Fund. The grant will be used to 1. set up LGB youth groups, 2. support LGB young people to be involved in decision-making processes that affect LGB young people through consultation with agencies around Bristol, North Somerset, South Gloucestershire and Bath & North East Somerset and 3. develop work with LGB young people to deliver training and peer mentoring to adults, young people and organisations around homophobia and other LGB issues. The award has attracted homophobic responses including one from the leader of the local Tory party: Mr Eddy, who heads the opposition Conservative group on the city council, said: "I think this is a mistaken and misguided, outrageous waste of money. Sadly, it seems to be further confirmation that the Big Lottery has long since ceased to impartially distribute lottery cash to worthwhile and respected causes, instead it seems obliged to dole out punters' money to a raft of politically correct lobbies which clearly sit within the Labour Government's priority."
24th August 2009
The Count Me In Too research project in Brighton has released its latest report, this time it concentrates on alcohol and drug misuse. The Drugs & Alcohol Additional Findings Report June 2009 has found that LGBT people are significantly more likely to misuse drugs than the general population.
Here are some of the findings for young LGBTs compared with national statistics and GALYIC data: cannabis, 52% Brighton, 21% national, 34% GALYIC; cocaine, 28% Brighton, 6% national, 16% GALYIC; ecstasy, 35% Brighton, under 5% national, 14% GALYIC; speed/amphetamine, 17% Brighton, 3% national, 22% GALYIC; heroin, 4% Brighton, less than 1% national, 4% GALYIC.
Only 2% of the Brighton study were accessing local drug or alcohol help or advice services. Click here to access survey.
20th August 2009
The National Mental Health Development Unit has asked PACE to conduct research into the experiences of LGBT people who have felt suicidal or who have made a suicide attempt. We are trying to find out what help people access and how much they feel this benefitted them. Click here to access survey.
20th August 2009
Broken Rainbow and Eighteen & Under are conducting an online survey looking into domestic abuse prevalence and rates amongst LGBT youth. The survey is targeting young people aged between 18-25 years of age and will gather data on their experience and awareness of domestic violence. At the end of the questionnaire (10 to 15 min to complete it), if they want to, respondents can be entered into a FREE PRIZE DRAW and grab their chance to win an Apple iPod Shuffle 1GB or a pop up Quechua 2 Seconds Tent! Third prize is a £10 Amazon voucher. Click here to access survey.
NEW WEBSITE OFFERS TOOLS AND RESOURCES FOR THE PREVENTION OF SUBSTANCE ABUSE AND TOBACCO USE FOR LGBT YOUNG PEOPLE
19th August 2009
HowUR.org is a new website for the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgendered (LGBT) young adult community in Maine. The website asks, "You've figured out who you are… have you asked how you are?" and offers health information, tools and resources aimed to help prevent high-risk drinking, tobacco use, substance abuse, as well as promote nutrition and physical activity. Click here to access website.
19th August 2009
Boston, Mass. - Research indicates that the social stigma that surrounds lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) teens leads to a variety of health risks such as substance use, risky sexual behaviors, eating disorders, suicidal ideation, and victimization. An editorial in the September issue of the Journal of Adolescent Health calls on clinicians and health researchers to lead the charge in improving the health and well-being of U.S. LGBT teens. Clinicians can start by providing LGBT teens with high-quality, preventive care in a regular, private, and confidential environment. Health researchers can start by including information on sexual orientation and gender identity in health surveys and assessments. Click here for further information.
14th August 2009
Lesbians, gays and bisexuals are twice as likely as heterosexual men and women to seek help from mental health professionals, according to a new study by the UCLA School of Public Health. The study, published today in the journal BMC Psychiatry, examines the relationship of gender and sexual orientation to the use of services to treat psychiatric problems such as mental health and alcohol and drug disorders. Click here for further information.
14th August 2009
As a result of a settlement reached in a lawsuit brought by the American Civil Liberties Union, two Tennessee school districts agreed to stop blocking access to online information about lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender issues. A federal court dismissed the lawsuit against the Metropolitan Nashville Public Schools and Knox County Schools after the settlement was reached. Click here for further information.
7th August 2009
The American Psychological Association have released a report which says there is no evidence that reparative therapy (changing sexual orientation) works. Therapists (usually religious therapists) both in the USA and in Britain continue to maintain that being lesbian or gay is a mental illness that they can cure with therapy. In response to this, the APA commissioned a review of research over the past articles from 1960 to 2007. Most of the research had been conducted before 1978. As part of its report, the task force identified that some clients seeking to change their sexual orientation may be in distress because of a conflict between their sexual orientation and religious beliefs. The task force recommended that licensed mental health care providers treating such clients help them "explore possible life paths that address the reality of their sexual orientation, reduce the stigma associated with homosexuality, respect the client's religious beliefs, and consider possibilities for a religiously and spiritually meaningful and rewarding life." Click here to access report.
3rd August 2009
The families of the 26-year-old counsellor Nir Katz, and 16-year old Liz Trubeshi, murdered at the LGBT youth group in Tel Aviv on Saturday night, laid their children to rest yesterday whilst vigils have been held in different parts of the world. In response to the murderous attack on the gay youth group in Tel Aviv, community leaders have met with government officials to highlight the specific plight of gay teenagers including verbal, physical and sexual abuse and the high levels of mental health problems especially suicidal feelings. Social Affairs Minister, Isaac Herzog, has promised aid and an intervention programme to assist LGBT teenagers in Israel. He has appointed the ministry's Director General, Nahum Itskovitch, to oversee the programme. Click here for further information.
2nd August 2009
A gunman burst into the basement of the Tel Aviv Gay and Lesbian Association and opened fire on a support group for LGBT teenagers. Two have been killed and ten wounded, four seriously. The gunman, dressed in black, sprayed the interior with automatic rifle fire. Click here for further information. Our sympathies go out to the families and friends.
31st July 2009
A historic decision was made today: The Quakers agreed that they would "treat same-sex committed relationships in the same way as opposite-sex marriages, reaffirming our central insight that marriage is the Lord's work and we are but witnesses." Symon Hill, associate director of the thinktank Ekklesia, who is himself a Quaker, said "I trust this decision will inspire people of all faiths and none who are working for the inclusion of gay, lesbian and bisexual people". Click here for further information.
30th July 2009
Dr Keith Harris, an Australian psychologist, has recently completed a study with over 1,000 people from 40 countries aged between 18 and 74 years. He wanted to find out about people who were suicidal who used the internet to help them decide about suicide. Dr Harris said young gay and bisexual men are the most vulnerable "because they were in the group least likely to seek face-to-face help from doctors or support services." Dr Harris said suicidal people debated in their own minds whether to take their own lives and websites could trigger either positive or negative messages which could influence this. Dr Harris called for workers dealing with suicidal people to take a different approach when talking to lesbian, gay and bisexual people. Click here for further information.
27th July 2009
A new study shows that LGBT young people in Sweden suffer from poorer health than the general population. Psychological problems and an increased incidence of attempted suicide are among the issues highlighted. Click here to access further information.
27th July 2009
The report - What Boys Talk About to ChildLine - found bullying was the top problem, with 12,568 boys calling about it in 2007/08. The report also reveals that 6,403 boys rang about physical abuse and 4,780 about sexual abuse with 1,803 saying they had been raped. The number calling about sexuality has increased more than three fold from five years ago to 3,510. Click here to access further information.
24th July 2009
An American study has found that smoking is significantly more prevalent amongst lesbians and gay men than heterosexual people. The research found that 37 percent of homosexual women and 33 percent of homosexual men smoke. That compares to national smoking rates of 18 percent for women and 24 percent for men in the 2006 National Health Interview Survey. In the recent GALYIC survey, 33 percent of the young men, 58 percent of the young women and 33 percent of the young trans smoked. Click here to access further information.
24th July 2009
Four LGBT organisations have joined force to develop a holistic approach to responding to the needs of homeless LGBT young people in London. Stonewall Housing, the Albert Kennedy Trust, PACE and Galop now offer a new service entitled Jigsaw. Click here to access their website and to find out what services they offer.
20th July 2009
The Government's National Youth Homelessness Scheme has developed part of its website specifically about LGBT young people and homelessness. This excellent section not only refers to the levels of homelessnes amongst LGBT young people but also identifies why they are vulnerable, gives examples of good practice and identifies ways that housing and homelessness agencies can develop services to meet the needs of this group. Click here to access the webpages.
20th July 2009
In February 2009 the Department of Health and the Department for Children, Schools and Families published their latest strategy for children and young people. This joint DH/DCSF strategy presents the Government’s vision for children and young people’s health and wellbeing. It sets out how they will build on progress through: world-class outcomes; high quality services; excellent experience in using those services; and minimising health inequalities. The problem is, LGBT young people, a highly vulnerable group, are not included in the strategy. Whilst sexual orientation is mentioned in the Equality Impact Assessment, the Assessment states that there is insufficient data to quantify the likely impact on people of different sexual orientations" with a similar message regarding transgender people. GALYIC have sent an email to the DCSF disputing this and attached a copy of our "Ten Years On..." report. We await their response. Click here to access strategy.
21th June 2009
The first open gay pride in Calderdale, held in the Piece Hall, was a huge success. The deputy mayor of Calderdale, Councillir Nader Fekri opened the speeches, followed by Councillor Helen Rivron. Both councillors spoke of the advances in LGBT rights over the past decade and Councillor Fekri noted that it was opportune that Calderdale was having its first pride on the anniversary of the Stonewall riots in America, 40 years ago. Jeni, one of GALYIC's members, told the audience how important it was to her to be able to be out and proud and speak at such an event. Several hundred people basked in the sunshine and listened to music and poetry, including songs from Gay Abandon, the West Yorkshire choir. Later on in the event, another member from GALYIC, Tanisha, spoke about coming out as a trans young person and told the audience she had been a member of GALYIC for four years and how GALYIC had helped her. Click here for photos.
19th June 2009
Unified for Youth (U4Y) is our first ever youth conference, which will be held on July 17, 18, and 19 at the Art Institute of Pittsburgh. This conference is presented for LGBT youth, straight allies, parents/family members, and GSA advisors with the goal of affirming and supporting the wellness of LGBT youth and their allies through workshops, networking opportunities, special guest speakers, and social activities. Click here for more information.
17th June 2009
A report based on findings from 244 Ohio students who participated in GLSEN's 2007 National School Climate Survey, shows that Ohio LGBT students face extreme levels of harassment and assault and skip school at alarming rates because of feeling unsafe. Click here for briefing
29th May 2009
Kevin Jennings has been appointed Assistant Deputy Secretary, Office of Safe and Drug Free Schools by U.S. Department of Education Secretary Arne Duncan. Jennings is the founder and former executive director of the Gay, Lesbian, and Straight Education Network (GLSEN), an organization that works to make schools safe for all students, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity. Prior to his tenure at GLSEN, Jennings served as History Department chair and a history teacher at Concord Academy in Massachusetts and before that as a history teacher at Moses Brown School in Rhode Island. Jennings has also authored six books including Mama's Boy, Preacher's Son: A Memoir which was named a 2007 Book of Honor by the American Library Association and Telling Tales Out of School which was the winner of the 1998 Lambda Literary Award. Jennings received an A.B. in history from Harvard, an M.A. from the Columbia University Teachers College and an M.B.A. from New York University's Stern School of Business. Click here for a link to GLSEN.
27th May 2009
The Canadian Journal of Human Sexuality has just published a paper entitled Stigma management? The links between enacted stigma and teen pregnancy trends among gay, lesbian, and bisexual students in British Columbia. The article presents data showing that LGB youth show higher rates (two to seven times greater) of pregnancy involvement than their heterosexual peers. Click here for a link to full article.
23rd May 2009
Part of the Picture - a ground breaking new piece of research into the lesbian, gay and bisexual community's use of drugs and alcohol is now online and will be at Pride events all over England from Saturday 23 May. The research is being carried out by The Lesbian and Gay Foundation in partnership with The International School for Communities, Rights and Inclusion at the University of Central Lancashire and has been funded by the Big Lottery Fund's Big Research Programme. It is envisaged that this research will shape the future provision of drug and alcohol services to ensure that they are inclusive of the needs of LGB people, as well as developing a national evidence database of drug and alcohol usage amongst LGB communities. Click here for on-line survey.
23rd May 2009
This newly launched report is the first of its kind mapping out as it does existing health-related services, supports, gaps and actions for the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) community in Ireland. It was prepared by the HSE LGBT Health sub-committee in order to give a detailed overview of health and social service provision and support for people in this community across the State. The report finds that LGBT young people are particular vulnerability to isolation, fear, being stigmatised, being bullied and being rejected by their families, with consequences for physical and mental health. Click here for guidelines.
19th May 2009
The Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) has today published new guidelines on dealing with allegations of discriminatory behaviour.
19th May 2009
The American Civil Liberties Union and the ACLU of Tennessee sued two Tennessee school districts in federal court today, charging the schools are unconstitutionally blocking students from accessing online information about lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender issues.
6th May 2009
Bullying can literally drive young children insane, researchers revealed today. Being bullied increased the risk of psychotic symptoms by the age of adolescence up to four times, a study found. Children's symptoms included hallucinations, paranoid delusions such as believing they are being spied on, and irrational thoughts. Click here for more information.
1st May 2009
We learned yesterday that we have been successful in an application for a grant from Children in Need for funding for a Crisis Intervention Worker to work with LGBT young people in Calderdale aged 18 years and below. The age of coming out has dropped significantly over the past decade; our research suggests that the average age for coming out is now 14.8 years. Having said that, our youngest member has just turned 14 years and we are aware of at least three other, 13-year-old young gay men who have come out in different parts of Calderdale. The new worker will conduct needs assessments and develop individual action plans with members aged 18 years and below, as well as supporting our younger members with, amongst other things, coming out issues, homophobobic bullying and parental rejection. We hope to be recruiting this month.
28th April 2009
Government have accepted the recommendation from Sir Alasdair Macdonald that PSHE should become part of the national curriculum in both primary and secondary schools. This means that secondary schools will include lessons about same-sex relationships. However, faith schools will be allowed to educate pupils in line with their religious beliefs (perpetuating homophobia) and parents will have the right to withdraw their child from lessons. Click here to access report.
27th April 2009
The Equality Bill was published today and contains a raft of measures designed to tackle inequality and help Britain become a fairer society by simplifying legislation, improving public services and extending protection to a wide range of groups facing discrimination, including lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people. Full details on the bill can be found on the Commission for Human Rights and Equality website, click here. This means that all public services, including schools, will have a duty placed on them not only to tackle homophobic bullying but to challenge discrimination. Government expect the majority of the Bill to come into force in Autumn 2010. This is the earliest possible commencement date after the Bill has received Royal Assent. Certain parts of the Bill, such as the socio-economic duty on public bodies, and the public sector Equality Duty are likely to come into force in 2011.
23rd April 2009
Thanks to funding from the Parenting Support Grant (Community Foundation for Calderdale) GALYIC will be running a ten-week course aimed at parents whose children are lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender and appropriate professionals. The course will begin on Monday, 11th May, 7-9 pm and will be held in central Halifax. It is free. Click here for registration form
20th April 2009
The San Francisco School Health Programs Department has launched a new website to help teachers support lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender young people in schools. The site includes factual information and policies as well as exercises and procedures for creating a safe classroom. Click here for link
9th April 2009
Under the stated intent of making schools "safer" for all students, the San Francisco Unified School District has launched a website - believed to be the first of its kind - that provides resources designed to "meet the needs of gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and questioning youth" in its schools. The website includes policy documents, curriculum and classroom tools, creating a safe classroom and much more. Click here to access site.Click here for briefing
New York, 17th March 2009
Transgender youth face extremely high levels of victimization in school, even more so than their non-transgender lesbian, gay and bisexual peers. But they are also more likely to speak out about LGBT issues in the classroom. Click here for report.
10th March 2009
Rhode Island Youth Risk Behaviour Survey identifies LGBT young people as more likely to engage in risky behaviours than heterosexual youth.
8th March 2009
New Sexual Orientation Guide published by Department of Health.
8th March 2009
America develops a suicide prevention strategy for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender young people.
6th February 2009
Eight members of GALYIC will be travelling to London on Friday 6th February and will attend the annual Schools Out Conference the following day where they will deliver a dynamic 40 minutes presentation.
25th January 2009
At a joint conference with GALYIC (Gay and Lesbian Youth in Calderdale), the NCSS have launched their newly revised OCCA (Organisation Cultural Competence Self-Assessment Tool). The OCCA provides a formula to examine knowledge and service provision around the six equality strands, including sexual orientation. GALYIC helped NCSS adapt a previous model which was used to help CAMHS services become more culturally competent with regard to users from black and minority ethnic backgrounds. Click Here for work book Click Here for OCCA Tool
New York, 15th January 2009
LGBT students of color face unique and diverse challenges regarding victimization at school, according to Shared Differences: The Experiences of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Students of Color in Our Nation's Schools, a report released today by GLSEN, the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network. Click here for report.