International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia 2022
The International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia (IDAHOBiT) is marked globally on 17 May every year to draw attention to the discrimination and violence experienced by lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people, and all other people with diverse sexual orientations, gender identities or expressions, and sex characteristics.
What is the International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia (IDAHOBiT)?
The International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia (IDAHOBiT) was created in 2004 to draw the attention to the violence and discrimination experienced by lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex people and all other people with diverse sexual orientations, gender identities or expressions, and sex characteristics.
The date of 17 May was specifically chosen to commemorate the World Health Organization declassifying homosexuality as a mental disorder, which only happened in 1990.
The theme for IDAHOBiT this year is “Our Bodies, Our Lives, Our Rights” and focuses on LGBTQA+ people claiming the right to live their sexualities and to express their gender(s) freely, while also demanding to be free from all forms of violence.
Why is IDAHOBiT needed?
Many LGBTQA+ people continue to experience bigotry, hatred and discrimination on the basis of their sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or sex characteristics.
Galop, an LGBTQ+ anti-violence charity, published a Hate crime report in 2021 highlighting that reported LGBT+ hate crime had grown at double the rate of other forms of hate crime for the previous two years, and noting that even this was the tip of the iceberg, as most hate crime goes unreported.
Homophobia, biphobia and transphobia can take many forms such as name-calling, derogatory jokes, intrusive or hostile questioning, threatening to ‘out’ someone, as well as unwanted physical contact and violence. It can happen verbally, in writing, in person or virtually (eg by email, messages, social media). Whatever form it takes, it is always unacceptable.
What is Queen Mary doing about homophobia, biphobia and transphobia?
At Queen Mary we want to create an inclusive environment where LGBTQA+ staff and students are celebrated; where everyone can be themselves and be treated with kindness, dignity and respect.
Our Strategy 2030 sets out Queen Mary’s commitment and ambition to be the most inclusive university of our kind, anywhere; realising this vision means being a university of choice for LGBTQA+ people to study and work.
If you experience or witness homophobia, biphobia or transphobia, you can report it (anonymously if you like) and / or access support through the Queen Mary Report + Support tool.
Incidents of homophobia, biphobia and transphobia may constitute a criminal offence as a hate incident or hate crime under the Crime and Disorder Act 1998 and the Criminal Justice Act 2003. If you believe you have been a victim of a hate incident or hate crime you are within your rights to contact the police.
As a student at Queen Mary you may wish to reach out to one of the following people / groups for support and advice:
There are also lots of external organisations who can offer support; please see the list at the bottom of the page.
What can you do to help combat homophobia, biphobia and transphobia?
If you feel safe to do so, you can be an active bystander and call it out. Make it clear that you won’t tolerate this kind of behaviour in any form.
You can find out more about the LGBTQA+ community by accessing the following:
- Find out more about our fantastic Queen Mary LGBTQA+ role models. If you are interested in becoming a role model yourself, you can contact Darren Hunwicks (firstname.lastname@example.org), EDI Officer.
- Read Queen Mary’s Trans Inclusion Statement of Commitment 2022 [PDF]
- Non-binary Inclusion and Allyship booklet [PDF]
- Bi Inclusion and Allyship booklet [PDF]
- Ace Inclusion and Allyship booklet [PDF]
- Read and share our Being a Trans Ally leaflet [PDF]: find out what we mean by ‘trans’ and what you can do to be a trans ally.
- Read and share our #PronounsMatter leaflet [PDF]: find out what pronouns are, how to use them, and why they matter as well as how you can show your support for gender diverse staff and students.
Further information, resources and support:
- East London Out Project (ELOP): a local charity offering a range of support services to LGBTQ+ communities including counselling.
- Tower Hamlets LGBT Community Forum: a project that aims to bring together LGBT+ people (and allies) who live, work, study or socialise in the London Borough of Tower Hamlets.
- Galop: an LGBTQ+ anti-violence charity, providing support services relating to hate crime, domestic abuse and sexual violence.
- Switchboard: LGBT+ helpline: provides information, support and referral service for LGBTQ+ and their friends, parents or family.
- Gendered Intelligence: a charity aiming to increase understanding of gender diversity, specialising in supporting young trans people under 21.
- Mermaids: supports trans and gender-diverse children, young people and their families.
- GIRES: works to improve the lives of trans and gender non-conforming people of all ages.
- Stonewall: campaigns for LGBTQ+ equality.
- Stop Hate UK: provides independent, confidential and accessible reporting and support for victims, witnesses and third parties.