Under Irish equality legislation, it is unlawful to discriminate on nine grounds (http://justice.ie/en/JELR/Pages/WP15000116), one of those grounds is sexual orientation. That means it is illegal to discriminate against someone because they happen to be gay, lesbian, bisexual or heterosexual.
Sexual Orientation is part of our identity and it is never acceptable to treat someone less favourably because of who they are or who they form relationships with.
Thankfully, Ireland has made much progress in recent years towards ensuring LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender) people enjoy full and equal rights.
However, homophobic and transphobic discrimination remain a problem in Irish society. Here are some statistics to consider:
|*70% of young LGBT people (14-18) have considered ending their own lives due to prejudice and discrimination|
|*56% of young LGBT people (14-18) have self-harmed|
|*LGBT youth are four times more likely to experience anxiety and depression than teenagers overall, due to anti-LGBT prejudice.|
|*Only 20% of LGBT youth feel they completely belong at school|
|*Less than half of LGBT youth feel they have received positive affirmation of their identity at school|
|*75% of LGBT people have been subjected to verbal abuse because of their identity (1 in 3 have been threatened with physical violence)|
|*Only 1 in 3 LGBT people in Ireland feel safe holding hands with their partner in public|
(Source: LGBT Ireland Report: https://www.hse.ie/eng/services/list/4/mental-health-services/connecting-for-life/publications/lgbt-ireland-report.html).
It is clear we as a society have much left to do in ensuring that LGBT people, and especially LGBT youth, feel equal in every sense of that word. KBFRC is strongly committed to playing our part in that effort.
On Thursday, 17th May 2018, from 12-2pm, the Centre will be marking International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia (IDAHO). This will see us raising the Rainbow Flag - the international symbol of LGBT equality -, launching a new equality poster which will be permanently on display at KBFRC, and a coffee morning where the importance of supporting our LGBT community will be discussed. The event will be open to all and we encourage as many people as possible to attend.
For more information about IDAHO, which is celebrated across the world, see the following article: https://www.headstuff.org/topical/idahot/
LGBT Helpline numbers:
GOSHH Limerick (Gender, Orientation, Sexual Health, HIV), phone: 061-314354, email: firstname.lastname@example.org
LGBT Ireland, phone: 1890 929 539, email: email@example.com
You can listen to the interviews about IDAHO on Clare FM's Morning Focus and Tipp FM's Tipp Today with Adam Long underneath: