Termly ‘Culture & Campaigns’ Meetings
Every term we run a meeting to discuss, plan and organise the campaigns that Warwick Pride runs. Sometimes this involves discussing what issues we want to focus on, at others it means working out the details of a campaign. Some outcomes of our meetings in the past include our You Are Not Alone campaign, programmes of events and literature for IDAHoBiT and LGBTUA+ Awareness Week and some successful visits to a local college to talk about LGBTUA+ phobia. We also sometimes use these sessions to collaborate with other groups; for example by running arts and craft socials with Prism LGBTQ, Coventry’s LGBTQ Youth Group. There is something for everyone (you don’t have to be a campaigner to attend) and our Campaigns Officers would love to see you there!
The big campaigns for 2016/17 are expected to be an Acronym Campaign educating people about the letters of the acronym, and continuing to advise as the university goes ahead with gender neutral toilets.
Pride Week/LGBTUA+ Awareness Week
Every year in Term 1 Warwick Pride and the LGBTUA+ Officers of the SU run a week of events dedicated to raising awareness of LGBTUA+ issues on campus and worldwide. In the past this has included workshops on asexuality, screenings of international LGBTUA+ films, an interfaith panel, a talk on the role of LGBT politics internationally, vigils to remember victims of LGBTUA+ phobia and much much more. For 2016/17, this is expected to be week 7, and plans include a Colour Run!
Every year on May 17th we organise a programme of events for the International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia. IDAHoBiT is meant to raise awareness regarding the ongoing discrimination and violence committed by states, societies and individuals against LGBTUA+ and queer people on various scales, from homophobic and transphobic legislations and forms of state repression to hate crimes including insults, attacks and murders. We also organise for Trans Day of Remembrance and Trans Day of Visibility.
Personal Tutor Training
Currently there is a lack of LGBTUA+ and mental health awareness provision in the personal tutor training given by the university. There is also no repeat training, which means that ‘updates’ to the training are only received by new tutors. We believe that as the first academic port of call for all Warwick students (both undergraduate and postgraduate) tutors should be more extensively trained in liberation issues. If you have any experiences of the personal tutor system to pass along they would be greatly received; please email firstname.lastname@example.org
There are a number of liberation communities at Warwick, whose core aims are entwined. In order to facilitate the furthering of these aims, and to ensure a safe space for those communities and their campaigns, we intend to secure a ‘liberation space’. This liberation space is envisioned as a room open to all who belong to the liberation communities, where meetings, discussions and social events may be held. For 2016/17 we expect to have at least a social space booked on a weekly basis for our communities.
You Are Not Alone
We launched our You Are Not Alone campaign, which aims to record and share the experiences of LGBTUA+ people. We interviewed a group of students and staff and created a video which has over 2000 views on Youtube, has been played at a short film festival at Warwick Arts Centre, and was shortlisted as Campaign of the Year at the NUS LGBT Awards 2012. We also did a radio recording which has been played on RaW; and our campaign is soon to extend to a blog where you can read stories from LGBTUA+ people and submit your own (anonymously if you wish). Email your stories to email@example.com
For many trans* people, as simple a task as choosing the gender option on a form can be a minefield. Many organisations believe that ‘trans*’ is a gender identity, which it is not. And for those who do not identify as a binary gender (‘male’ or ‘female’), there is often no suitable option for them. One of our ongoing campaigns is to ensure that all union and university forms are inclusive of non-binary people. As standard, we reccomend a write-in box, or where this is not appropriate, “man”, “woman”, “other”, and “prefer not to say” options as a minimum. Forward details of non-compliant forms to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Gender Neutral Toilets
For many trans* people, using a public toilet can be alienating, difficult and even dangerous. Warwick SU currently has Gender Neutral accessible toilets and we are working to secure more throughout the SU and University; as well as in venues in the local area.
Gender Neutral/Private Changing Rooms
For many LGBTUA+ people, using gendered public changing rooms can be uncomfortable, difficult and even dangerous. Warwick Sports Centre currently has gender neutral accessible private changing facilities and we are working to ensure that this service is more widely known. (If you wish to use them, just ask at the desk – no reason is required to be given to access them.)
It is an unfortunate fact that many LGBTUA+ people have a less than positive experience with sport at school. At Warwick, we’re committed to ensuring that sport is an inclusive and supportive space for all (at every level).
Pride is a Protest
Pride events began in 1969 with the Stonewall riots; and historically Warwick Pride events have been about protesting against the inequalities that LGBTUA+ people have faced and continue to face. Every year we march with other student groups as part of Coalition Midlands LGBT (a network of LGBT+ groups across the Midlands) at Birmingham Pride to continue this message and oppose the inequalities that LGBTUA+ people face in the UK and worldwide.
People Of Faith
Pride will be looking at issues queer people of faith face, and extending safe space rules to explicitly provide a safe space for people of faith. We will be looking at adapting Pride’s welfare and parenting schemes to be aware of these issues and to make queer people of faith feel as much a part of the community as everyone else. We’d like to call upon members of faith to share their personal experiences; please email in to email@example.com and we’ll look to include these on our website.
Hope Must Stay
LGBT asylum seekers, many of whom face discrimination and even death if forced to return to the countries they are from, encounter disbelief and homophobia within the asylum system. Warwick Pride works with Movement for Justice to support LGBT asylum seekers in their claims to stay in the UK; which started with supporting a Coventry resident Hope, who was seeking asylum from Nigeria, where homosexuality is illegal.
If you would like further information about any of the campaigns we are currently involved in, or have suggestions for future campaigns we could lend our time and resources to, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Want to get involved in campaigning? Have an idea for a campaign that we should do? Contact us!
You can either email email@example.com or use the form below: