Last night saw the launch of new anti-homophobic bullying charity, Diversity Role Models. Conservative politician and Home Secretary Theresa May delivered the keynote speech at the opening.
Last night’s event saw a large number of openly-gay public figures including writer Paul Burston, Actor Charlie Condou, BBC newsreader Jane Hill, and Labour MP Chris Bryant.
The Home Secretary said: “Homophobic and transphobic bullying has no place in schools, which is why it is so important that schools are able to challenge such prejudiced views.”
“Diversity Role Models is a great example of helping young people to understand and accept diversity, and I fully support its work.”
The charity aims to take positive role models of all sexualities into schools in order to educate students about diversity and to promote it amongst young people.
Suran Dickson, Founder and Chief Executive of Diversity Role Models said: “Many LGBT people have told me their lives were horrendous at school, that if one person had given them, or their peers, a positive message about gay people, it would have made a huge difference.”
“Our purpose is simple – to give hope of a happy future to young people who may be LGB or T and to create understanding in their peers by gently challenging the misconceptions about gay people which often lead to bullying.”
Stonewall’s Hero of the Year Roger Crouch, who lost his son after he committed suicide as a result of homophobic bullying is a patron of the charity along with Heather Peace.
Mr Crouch said: “Since our son Dominic took his own life, my wife Paula and I have been campaigning against bullying in all its forms and working to help prevent suicide,”
“Our message to schools is that they must create a safe environment with dignity and respect for all pupils; our plea to Government is to require all schools to have a zero tolerance approach.”
For more information visit Diversity Role Models online here.