jackie kay - LGBT Foundation

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jackie kay - LGBT Foundation
FOR OVER 16’s ONLY!
NEWS • COMMENT • HEALTH • COMMUNITY • LISTINGS
Your Magazine for Life
PUBLISHED BY
Ending Homophobia,
Empowering People
www.lgf.org.uk
OUTNORTHWEST ISSUE 120 FEB-MAR 2014 FREE!
Registered Charity No.1070904
PLUS!
WE INTERVIEW
S
UAL WOMEN RETURN
F LESBIAN & BISEX
OUR CELEBRATION O
SUGAR &
SPICE 8
PLUS! TO
JACKIE
KAY
“It’s great to have
ambiguity and
androgyny and to
have people mix up
what it means to be a
woman or a man.”
E
ATE CRIM
H
E
G
A
L
IL
V
•
E
V
O
L
H
RUSSIA WIT
OUTNORTHWEST EDITOR’S LETTER FEB-MAR 2014
All things nice!
Hello! I’m delighted to introduce
our February/March edition of
outnorthwest, which I’ve been
asked to guest edit.
As The Lesbian & Gay Foundation’s
Women’s Programme Coordinator, I’ll be
spending much of February preparing for
Sugar & Spice, The LGF’s annual celebration
of International Women’s Day, which is now
in its eighth year. It’s a great opportunity for
women to get together and celebrate being
lesbian or bisexual.
February is LGBT History month, which will
be marked across the North West with
an inventive array of events, including the
wonderfully eclectic Queer Contact Festival.
Lesbian and bisexual women are often
doubly invisible in history, both because they
are women and because they are members
of a sexual minority. Having a women’s
programme at The LGF, with a specific
women’s bulletin, monthly workshops and
special events such as Sugar & Spice, helps
us to raise the visibility of women within the
LGBT community and provides a space for
women to meet each other, socialise and
share experiences which we believe is vitally
important.
But we also think that it’s important that as
a community we work harder to make sure
that we are more welcoming to everyone.
Biphobia, homophobia and transphobia are
all terrible, but they are made doubly worse
when they come from within the community
which is meant to provide you with a safe
space. Too many ‘women’s’ or ‘lesbian’
events seek to exclude bisexual and/or
trans* women.
At The LGF we make a clear commitment
to challenge biphobia and transphobia with
the same rigour that we would challenge
homophobia and all our women’s events are
explicitly for anyone who self-identifies as a
lesbian or bisexual woman.
You’ll find information about Sugar
& Spice and some other aspects of
our women’s programme in this issue
of outnorthwest, but if you’d like to
know more email [email protected] or
register for our ebulletin at
www.lgf.org.uk/register
Sian Lambert
THANK YOU EVERYONE!
ONW is absolutely thrilled to
have won first place for Regional
LGBT Magazine of the Year in
The Co-operative Respect ‘Loved
By You Awards’. Thank you to
everyone who voted for us, it
means a great deal to the whole
team. Find out more on page 11...
Ending Homophobia,
Empowering People
www.lgf.org.uk
Registered Charity No.1070904
outnorthwest is published every two months by
The Lesbian & Gay Foundation, Number 5,
Richmond Street, MANCHESTER. M1 3HF.
General Enquiries: 0845 3 30 30 30
E-mail: [email protected]
EDITORIAL TEAM
EDITOR & LAYOUT Grahame Robertson
LAYOUT & LISTINGS Mark Eastwood
NEWS EDITOR:Jen Lau (Hello!)
MEN’S HEALTH EDITOR Stacey Adams
WEB EDITOR Marc Robinson
DISTRIBUTION Shaun Lloyd, Sam Whalley,
James Derham; Martin Cooper.
CONTRIBUTORS
Rachel Bottomley; Lucy Rolfe; Andrew Gilliver;
Kate Hardy; Connie Lingus; Sian Lambert;
Jakeb Arturio Braden; Gaydio; Martin Cooper;
Stacey Adams; Debbie Edwards;Sam Whalley;
Sam Days
SPECIAL THANKS
Barry Priest; Contact Theatre; Jackie Kay; Patience
Abgabi; Gaydio; Rachel Snow- Miller; The Holocaust
Educational Trust; Dr. Ben Goorney.
ADVERTISING
For information on advertising in outnorthwest,
contact us on 0845 3 30 3 0 30.
Or e-mail [email protected]
IF YOU DO ONE THING THIS WEEK END HOMOPHOBIA AT YOUR OLD SCHOOL!
Were you bullied and teased at school because you were lesbian, gay or bisexual? Imagine you could go back to your old school and make it safer for those
young people who are suffering the same today. You can. For a small donation of only £20, the LGF’s Enough Is Enough campaign will send a ‘Safer Schools
Pack’ to your old school on your behalf. You can even send a personal message with the pack. To find out more, visit www.lgf.org.uk/enough today.
INSIDE OUT
32
REGULARS
06 ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!
How you can help stop bullying in schools.
f.org.u
www.lg
26
QUEER
CONTACT
GAY
MEN’S
HEALTH
08 NEWS & OPINION
We look at Sugar & Spice 8, and the latest
news from across the LGB North West!
16 VILLAGE PEOPLE
Pride House Manchester, and how you can
get involved!
18 UP YOUR WAY
What’s going on in your region.
38 LISTINGS
Every LGB&T service in the north west.
FEATURES
24 LET’S GET SOCIAL
Welook ahead to some amazing events for
women coming up!
26 QUEER CONTACT
We’ve spoken to Jackie Kay about her
spoken word event at Queer Contact.
AND MORE!
20 TALKING POSITIVE
A brand new regular feature.
14 LESSONS FROM AUSCHWITZ
outnorthwest visited Auschwitz-Birkenau
last October.
18
UP YOUR
WAY
22 OUTSPOKEN!
This issue: Rachel Snow-Miller.
06
28 WELLBEING
Looking after you and your mental
health.
RUSSIA
30 MEN’S HEALTH
Ask the Doc! Your sexual health
questions answered.
36 GET INVOLVED!
How do you fancy getting fit, and
raising money for a good cause
at the same time? Get involved!
Homophobia
ACTION against
www.lgf.org.uk/enough
DISCLAIMER Publication of the name or photo of any person in this magazine should not be taken as any indication of the
sexual orientation or HIV status of that person. All views expressed in outnorthwest are not necessarily those of the Editor or
The Lesbian & Gay Foundation. outnorthwest recognises all copyrights. Where possible, we have acknowledged the copyright
holder. Contact us if we have failed to credit your copyright and we will happily correct any oversight.
obia
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again
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ACT
k/enou
34
HISTORIAL
CONVICTIONS
Homophobia
ACTION against
TAKING ACTION
www.lgf.org.uk/enough
IC
WINTER OLYMP
S 2014
MANCHESTER CHALLENGES
HOMOPHOBIA
IN SPORT!
With the upcoming Sochi Winter
Olympics, there has been much
debate about how prominent
homophobia in sport has become
and how important LGB&T rights
are championed, not just in Russia
but in the rest of the world too.
In a unique show of solidarity and support
for our LGB&T brothers and sisters in Russia,
Manchester is approaching the starting line
and getting ready for the starting pistol to go
off in the challenge against homophobia by
hosting its very first Pride House.
PRIDE HOUSE
Pride House International is a union of LGB&T
sports and human rights organisations
promoting equality in sport, who work to
ensure Pride House is included at major
international sports events. Last year, Russian
President Vladimir Putin passed a law banning
so-called ‘non-traditional values’ or ‘gay
propaganda’ (as it’s also termed) causing
outrage across the globe - and in response
to the banning of a Pride House in Sochi Manchester is proudly accepting it here.
Pride House Manchester is running a series of
events over the 16-day festival from 7th-23rd
February, coinciding with the Sochi Winter
Olympics. Lou Englefield, Director of Pride Sports
and Coordinator of Pride House International,
believes in taking a stand against the laws
in Russia and ensuring that people are able
to experience the full benefits of sport while
truly being themselves. Lou, who hails from
Manchester, said: “The show of solidarity from
remote Pride Houses across the globe will
show LGB&T people in Russia that they are not
alone in the face of escalating discrimination
and violence in their own country.
With the Winter Olympics now underway,
Manchester is showing solidarity with our LGB&T
brothers and sisters in Russia. Jen Lau Reports.
“I have colleagues and friends in Russia for
whom I have a great deal of respect and
concern. I worry what will happen when
the Sochi Games are over and when the
international focus moves elsewhere,” she
added. Lou emphasised that we still have
a long way to go before LGB&T people feel
welcomed and included at all levels of sport,
even in the UK.
Project Manager of Pride House Manchester
Jackie Crozier agreed and said: “I believe for
06 OUTNORTHWEST Support the work of the LGF. Donate online today at www.lgf.org.uk
the sporting world, it is a question of time.
Personally, I believe that some sports are far
more open to outing LGB&T athletes than
others, simply due to stigma and perhaps
stereotyped attitudes of particular fans
However, as the world moves on, sport will
have to do so too. Let’s just keep our fingers
crossed that it doesn’t take too long.”
While the journey to battle homophobia may
be a long one, Pride House Manchester and To
Russia With Love are joining forces to play their
TWEET US!
LIKE US!
Search for ‘Enough Is
Enough! Action Against
Homophobia’ on Facebook.
OPINION PETER DAVIES
part and present a fantastic alternative opening
ceremony to the games.
SAME SEX HAND HOLDING
INITIATIVE
The event will feature an alternative Olympic
procession, a Same Sex Hand Holding Initiative
(SSHHI) and a fabulous, frosty version of Taurus’
infamous, ‘It’s A Gay (Winter) Knockout!’ As part
of the SSHHI, people will be asked to hold hands
to form a circle of unity in the Village so we can
send a clear message of compassion to LGB&T
Russia and to reiterate that Manchester’s LGB&T
community stands shoulder to shoulder against
homophobia. The SSHHI is calling for people
to take every opportunity to hold hands with a
person of the same-sex and post a photo of it
onto Facebook, Twitter or Instagram using the
hashtags #sshhi and #pridehousemcr
The To Russia With Love procession will feature
LGB&T sports teams from the community,
organisations who have shown their support to
the event, political figures, venue staff from the
Village and everyone who wishes to participate.
Additionally, as part of the Queer Contact
Festival, the Contact Theatre will be presenting
four plays the following evening entitled ‘To
Russia With Love,’ and a collection of other
venues, including Vanilla, Via and Kraak Gallery
will also be hosting their own events.
Alike to The LGF’s recent video message showing
love and support for the LGB&T community in
Russia, Pride House Manchester have also made
video messages and are translating them into
Russian so they can share them too. Local DJ
and entertainer Billie Jean has helped to organise
the events and is concerned that athletes may
feel pressurised into coming out as opposed to
coming out when the time is right for them.
He said: “I’m always worried that they have
to do it (come out) because the media has
made them. I hope it gives the sporting world
inspiration and motivation to others, who fear
that coming out may ruin their dream.”
To find out more about Pride House
Manchester, visit:
www.pridehousemcr.com
Hello readers of ONW. This
year, in the spotlight and in
the following months will
no doubt be a big focus on
equal marriage. Now that it
was given the go ahead last
year, everybody in the LGBT
community is free to marry
who they want and I couldn’t
be happier for everyone.
From a bisexual point of view, I can
appreciate how some people may
see my enthusiasm as contrived, given
the regrettably popular (and widely
propagated) myth that Bisexual men
and women live within a bubble of
heterosexual privilege. Yes I suppose
they could already marry (opposite
sex) and experience the overall social
acceptance, but bisexuality isn’t that
straightforward.
What about the people who just
happen to find love with and wish to
marry people of the same gender?
That being known in the LGBT world as
same-sex marriage and up until now
they will have experienced the same
barriers to actual legal marriage –in
the eyes of the law that is- as gay and
lesbian individuals.
Mainstream media invariably ignored
the Bisexual identity (and others) when
covering the bill of equal marriage last
year. The BBC called it “Gay Marriage”
on multiple occasions and they don’t
shoulder the guilt alone as I’ve heard
a large proportion of people in the
LGBT community refer to it in the same
manner, most notably gay men in the
community and on Twitter.
It isn’t wanting the proverbial cake and
eating it that bisexual people voice
Follow us and get involved in
the conversation on Twitter,
@lgfoundation
BY THE
BI
“Mainstream
media invariably
ignored the
Bisexual identity
(and others) when
covering the bill
of equal marriage
last year. The
BBC called it
‘Gay Marriage’
on multiple
occasions.”
their support for marriage, it’s fairer
because it is called equal marriage and
there always seemed to be a flaw in
the definition of that term. Although
there may never be a flood (unless you
ascribe to the slanted beliefs of David
Silvester) of bisexual couples rushing
to tie the knot come the day, it’s fair to
say that there will be more than most
people realise.
Bisexuality and equal marriage may
not seem to go hand in hand and the
very notion of same sex couples may
urge uneducated vocalists to claim
same-sex couples as simply “gay”. If
that is so –and I don’t for one minute
believe that it is - why then do a
sizable number of bisexual groups and
activists support it if it didn’t apply to
them, you may wonder.
Next time you see two people of
the same gender holding hands,
reconsider the words “gay couple”.
Although the general masses may call
it “Gay-marriage”, it affects everyone
and not just in the LGBT community.
[email protected]
Pete x
AGENDA
IN DEPTH NEWS, COMMENT AND ANALYSIS
FEB-MAR 2014
8/9 MARC H
MAKE LOVE, NOT WAR
SUGAR & SPICE
RETURNS!
It’s back! Sugar & Spice,
The Lesbian and Gay
Foundation’s annual
celebration of International
Women’s Day for lesbian
and bisexual women,
returns for its eighth
amazing year.
Traditionally Sugar & Spice has taken place
on a Saturday afternoon but this year we’re
extending it over the whole weekend! The
dates for your diary are Saturday 8th &
Sunday 9th March.
As in previous years, the Saturday session
will run from 12-6pm, with free food, free
workshops, free massages and lots of
opportunities to network and socialise. At
the time of going to print we’re still finalising
the workshop programme, but the afternoon
will include taster sessions on screenprinting, kick-boxing, making music and
yoga. Our informal cafe space will be open
all afternoon, with free refreshments and
free crafts.
The theme for this year’s Sugar & Spice
is ‘Make Love Not War’, in honour of
Manchester’s theme for International
Women’s Day of ‘women as peacemakers’.
To link in with this theme we’ll be rounding
off the Saturday session with a panel
discussion featuring inspirational lesbian and
bisexual women on the theme of ‘Are our
battles won?’
On Sunday we’ll be opening the building
from 11am for a networking brunch,
followed by a lazy afternoon of Sapphic
The LGF’s acclaimed event for women returns in March,
this time for a whole weekend!
cinema. If you’re feeling more energetic, we’ll
have a group bike ride and an LGBT history
walk.
bisexual woman. You can drop into the
event at any point over the weekend but due
to restricted space some workshops should
be pre-booked.
Sugar & Spice wouldn’t be complete without
an after-party, and the wonderful women
behind Rapture Club Night will be hosting
a very special Rapture Unplugged night at
Taurus on Canal Street – tickets are just £5.
Visit www.lgf.org.uk/sugarandspice
or call 0845 3 30 30 30 to reserve
your place or to let us know about
access requirements.
To round off your weekend, there’s a
community production of The Vagina
Monologues taking place at Eden on the
evenings of Friday 7th & Sunday 9th March.
Sugar & Spice is a FREE event open to
anyone who self-identifies as a lesbian or
Sugar & Spice 8 – Make Love Not
War takes place at The Lesbian
and Gay Foundation, Number 5
Richmond Street, Manchester M1
3HF on Sat 8th & Sun 9th March.
08 OUTNORTHWEST Support the work of the LGF. Donate online today at www.lgf.org.uk
AGENDA FEB-MAR 2014
CONTACT US: outnorthwest, The Lesbian & Gay Foundation, Number 5, Richmond Street, Manchester M1 3HF
EMAIL: [email protected] TWITTER: @lgfoundation CALL: 0845 3 30 30 30
BEYOND BABIES AND
BREAST CANCER
“Lesbian
& bisexual
women are
more likely
to report
negative
experiences
of healthcare
than either
gay/bi men of
heterosexual
women.”
The LGF launches major new report focussing on Lesbian and Bisexual women’s health needs
On Friday 24th January The
Lesbian & Gay Foundation
launched their major new report
into the healthcare needs and
experiences of lesbian and
bisexual women.
Entitled ‘Beyond Babies & Breast Cancer –
Expanding our understanding of women’s
health needs’, the report brings together
evidence from over 60 sources to paint a
compelling picture of the ways in which
lesbian and bisexual women’s health needs
sometimes differ from those of heterosexual
women. The report is aimed at anyone who
works in healthcare, or who is responsible
for managing or commissioning healthcare
services and research, and is accompanied
by a series of practical action plans for
clinicans, commissioners, decision makers
and researchers. The report and action plans
can be downloaded from www.lgf.org.uk/
womenshealth.
Some of the key issues raised by the report
include:
•
•
•
•
•
•
Lesbian and bisexual women are more
likely to report negative experiences of
healthcare than either gay and bisexual
men or heterosexual women.
Several large scale studies have found
that both lesbian and bisexual women
are more likely than heterosexual
women to report ill health or longstanding health conditions. Bisexual
women seem particularly at risk.
Multiple studies have found that rates
of drinking, smoking and illicit drug use
amongst lesbian and bisexual women
are markedly higher than amongst
heterosexual women.
Lesbian and bisexual women find it very
difficult to access relevant information
about sexual health and are often given
incorrect or misleading advice.
Evidence suggests that lesbians are
at a slightly increased risk of breast
cancer due to lifestyle factors. Despite
this, there is very little information and
support aimed at lesbian and bisexual
women with a cancer diagnosis.
Lesbian and bisexual women are more
likely than heterosexual women to
•
suffer mental ill-health, with prevalence
particularly high amongst bisexual
women.
Older lesbian and bisexual women are
more likely to live alone as they age
and are therefore more likely to need
to access services. However, one in six
older lesbian and bisexual women have
experienced discrimination, hostility or
poor treatment because of their sexual
orientation.
‘Beyond Babies & Breast Cancer’ was
launched at a planning and learning
event, attended by over forty healthcare
professionals at The Lesbian & Gay
Foundation’s Community Resource Centre
in Manchester. Over the next few months
The LGF will be working with partners in
the NHS and local authorities to encourage
widespread implementation of the report’s
recommendations.
If you would like to receive a copy of
the report and accompanying action
plans, please email [email protected]
or call 0845 3 30 30 30.
www.lgf.org.uk OUTNORTHWEST 09
AGENDA FEB-MAR 2014
COMING UP!
WHAT’S ON
Mother’s Ruin
QUEER
MEDIA
FESTIVAL
To mark the opening of the Sochi
Winter Olympics and LGBT History
Month, Salford University student
Jamie Starboisky has organised the
Queer Media Festival (QMF), a free
event in Media City, showcasing a
variety of queer media in its many
forms - from short films, music and
multimedia to talks and Q&A’s with
LGBTQ people who either work in
media or have produced award
winning short films.
Director Bruno Collins and writer Craig
Daniel Adams will be premiering their
latest film Kit, a story of one girl coming
to understand her sexuality and what
it means to her world. Documentary,
Children 404, entered by Russian LGB&T
rights activists will also be shown so
the event will cater for a diverse range
of tastes. Jamie, 30, said: “I believe
passionately in the power of ideas to
change attitudes, lives and, ultimately,
the world. Our festival is a chance to
communicate ideas worth spreading
and I hope a meaningful opportunity for
people to hear many stories, be inspired
and perhaps consider creating their own
media content in the future.”
QMF is on Friday 7th February at the
Digital Performance Lab at MediaCityUK,
12-5pm. Keep updated on Twitter
by following @QueerMediaUK.
Tickets are free, but must be booked
via Eventbrite: www.eventbrite.
co.uk/e/queer-media-festivaltickets-10299972495
There’s lots of great events happening over the next
few weeks. Grab your diaries!
QUEER CONTACT 2014
Queer Contact is back this February, as part
of LGBT History Month, featuring the best in
music, comedy, theatre, spoken word, and
more, from local, national and international
talent. The festival takes place from 6th15th February and will feature Opera North
and The Tiger Lillies, Joey Arias, Jackie
Kay, Craig Hill, The House of Suarez Vogue
Ball, Morher’s Ruin, exhibitions from Pam
Van-Damned and Lee Baxter/George House
Trust, plus much more.
Tickets are priced from £3 and are
available by calling: 0161 274 0600
or visiting www.contactmcr.com
Find out more on pages 26 and 27.
MOTHER’S RUIN: WHO’S
GOT THE MAX FACTOR?
Nine performers have just 4 minutes to bowl
over the judges, wow the audience and
take home the grand prize of a headline slot
at a future Mother’s Ruin, and £250 prize
money (donated by event sponsors Cake
Tin Foundation). With celebrity judges My
Bad Sister, Sheela Blige and Mrs Jon-Jo;
everyone’s favourite bearded hostess, Ms
Timberlina and Myra Dubois interviewing the
contestants and audience (like Ant & Dec
10 OUTNORTHWEST Support the work of the LGF. Donate online today at www.lgf.org.uk
rolled into one, but with more hair and tons
more talent)!
Tickets cost £12/£7 on Friday 7th
February, 7.30pm at Contact, Oxford
Road, Manchester. To book call: 0161
274 0600 or book online: www.
contactmcr.com/mothersruin
TO RUSSIA WITH LOVE
To mark the opening of the Winter Olympics
in Sochi, Manchester’s LGB&T theatre
community are presenting To Russia With
Love: Stage, an evening of striking, funny and
inspiring new drama to highlight homophobia
and promote LGBT rights in Russia. This
unique performance features four specially
commissioned pieces of drama: One
Abstention by Stephen Hornby (Loving
Her), Don’t Tell The Kids by Chris Hoyle,
Champions by Rob Ward and Article 6.21 by
Adam Zane. The show will be performed
at Contact, Oxford Road, Manchester on
Saturday 8th February at 8pm.
Tickets cost £9/£5 with group
discounts from: www.contactmcr.
com/torussiawithlove Find out more
on pages 6 and 7.
e
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CLingus
!
N
M
U
L
O
C
W
NE
Hello Lady Lovers!
Ending Homophobia,
Empowering People
www.lgf.org.uk
Registered Charity No.1070904
GOLD, SILVER
& BRONZE
The LGF and ONW wins three Co-Op
‘Loved By You Awards’
The LGF is the proud
winner of three awards
in the Co-operative’s
Respect ‘Loved by You’
Awards 2013.
outnorthwest published by The LGF won
first place for Regional LGBT Magazine of
the Year, the charity won second place for
Health & Wellbeing Charity of the Year and
third place for LGBT Charity of the Year marking gold, silver and bronze wins! We’re
dedicating our win to our brothers and
sisters in Russia who are currently facing
intolerable discrimination in the hope for a
future where there is a global acceptance
of all people, no matter what their sexual
orientation.
outnorthwest Editor, Grahame Robertson,
said: “I’m absolutely thrilled that we’ve won
this award, and even more so because
It’s International Women’s Day and the
theme is ‘Make Love Not War’ and as
we know ladies there is nothing I enjoy
more than making love! But what happens
when making love causes wars in the
relationship? I know what I’m talking about
and so do you. It’s that-which-must-notbe-named … LESBIAN BED DEATH!
Well I’m personally declaring a war on
lesbian bed death and all it stands for!
Being in a relationship (monogamous or
poly) is a beautiful thing, but after a while
things might get repetitive or you might
even notice that you’re nights of passion
have been now replaced with watching
‘Orange is the new black’ and commenting
on the attractiveness of each inmate
before rolling over and going to sleep.
Well no-more! If you feel like your sex life is
dwindling you can follow these easy steps
to re-lighting that passion in between the
sheets!
•
•
•
it was voted for by the community. I’ve
always believed that outnorthwest is a
unique magazine, offering information and
advice in a way that no other LGB title does.
This award belongs to everyone who has
contributed to outnorthwest over the last
14 years – many of whom are volunteers
and all of whom are a part of the community
we exist to serve. A huge thank-you to
everyone who voted for outnorthwest
and to everyone who continues to pick the
magazine up.”
www.lgf.org.uk
•
•
Talk to your partner(s) – I can’t
stress this enough! They might feel
the same, or they might have other
worries, which is why the sex might
be taking a back burner.
Be in-tune with yourself – You need to
know what turns you on and presses
your buttons before you can assume
that your partner does! What songs
are your lady jams? Where are your
hot spots? What stuff really doesn’t
do it for you?
Go back to basics – what made the
sex so good the first time round?
Then try something new – Roleplay?
Toys? BDSM? Threesomes?
Moresomes?
The best thing you can do is talk
to your partners about it! But if you
want more advice feel free to come
to Sugar & Spice at The LGF on 8th
March 2014 or email [email protected]
LGF.org.uk for non-judgemental and
confidential advice.
Kisses for both lips,
Connie Lingus xxx
www.lgf.org.uk OUTNORTHWEST 11
AGENDA FEB-MAR 2014
‘TIME TO TALK DAY’
SHARE YOUR STORY
GETTING
MARRIED?
WE WANT TO
HEAR FROM
YOU!
Dust off your wide-brimmed
hat and your fanciest dress
because we’ve got a feeling
you’re going to need it!
Following the announcement that the
first same-sex weddings in England and
Wales are taking place on Saturday 29th
March 2014, we’re looking forward to
featuring your big day in the next issue
of outnorthwest! We would love to share
your stories of epic romance and tales of
soul-mate searching. If you’re planning
your big day and would like to share
it with our readers, then get in touch
because we’d love to be a part of it.
If you’re interested in being part
of a celebratory feature around
same-sex marriage then drop an
e-mail to:
[email protected]
It’s time to speak up about mental health.
On Thursday 6 February,
England’s biggest campaign to
end mental health stigma, Time
to Change, want to get more
people talking about mental
health than ever before.
Their new campaign aims to show that “It’s
the little things which make a big difference”
when it comes to mental health – such as
having a cup of tea and a chat.
TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE – WE
ALL NEED TO DO OUR BIT
To help Time to Change make more noise
about mental health than ever, they need as
many people and organisations as possible
to commit to having a conversation on Time
to Talk Day. They’ll be providing tips, tools
and conversation starters to help you do
12 OUTNORTHWEST Support the work of the LGF. Donate online today at www.lgf.org.uk
this – including Time to Talk tea bags. We’re
doing our bit at the LGF by holding a number
of staff events throughout the day.
HOW TO GET INVOLVED
There are three simple things you can do
now to get involved in the day:
Think about whether you could organise
an activity on 6 February to support Time
to Talk Day in your workplace, school, local
doctors surgery or just with your friends
and family. This could as simple as having
a conversation about mental health over a
cup of tea - or as creative as you’d like to
be. When you’ve decided let them know
by registering an activity at www.time-tochange.org.uk/talkday
Register to take part in the day by
signing up at www.time-to-change.
org.uk/talkday
AGENDA FEB-MAR 2014
Lessons from
Auschwitz
In October last year, outnorthwest was invited to visit the sites of Nazi concentration camps
Auschwitz-Birkenau. GRAHAME ROBERTSON writes about his experience there.
In October last year, I was
honoured to be asked to
accompany a group of young
people to the sites of Nazi
concentration camps of
Auschwitz-Birkenau in Poland.
All in all the visit takes place in one day,
and despite the packed itinerary, there
were plenty of opportunities for quiet
reflection and there’s no doubt that the
experience of visiting Auschwitz-Birkenau is
an extremely sobering one, and something
that will stay with me forever, and with the
young people.
the camps. Every shoe, every toy, every
strand of hair we saw had belonged to a
real person. A real person with the same
hopes, fears, friends and families as we
all have today. There really are no words
to describe the feeling of walking through
a large room piled from floor to ceiling with
human hair.
I was asked by the The Holocaust
Educational Trust, who’s aim is to educate
young people from every background
about the Holocaust and the important
lessons to be learned for today. Karen
Pollock is the Chief Executive of the
Holocaust Educational Trust, and says, “The
Holocaust Educational Trust’s ‘Lessons from
Auschwitz’ Project is such a vital part of our
work because it gives students the chance
to understand the dangers and potential
effects of prejudice and racism today.
The Project encourages them to act on
what they see and learn, and the inspiring
work they go on to do in their local areas
demonstrates the importance of the visit.”
The visit to Poland began with a visit to a
pre-war Jewish site in the Polish town of
Oswiecim. It was important to start here.
Before the war, this small town had a
thriving Jewish community. After the war,
there was no community left. Everyone was
killed. It was here that we visited the towns
synagogue, which still stands.
We were then taken the short distance to
Birkenau. This is the site that most people
associate with the word “Auschwitz” and
where the vast majority of victims were
murdered. The site is vast. The size of a
small village. Here, we saw the remnants
of barracks, crematoria and gas chambers.
It was at Birkenau where emotions began
to take over.
After our visit to Oswiecim, we headed to
Auschwitz. Nothing can really prepare you
for the harrowing sites and the palpable
feelings of sadness and anger. We saw
registration documents of inmates, piles of
human hair, shoes, clothes and other items
seized from the prisoners as they entered
14 OUTNORTHWEST Support the work of the LGF. Donate online today at www.lgf.org.uk
As we arrived at the site where cattle
trucks had emptied thousands upon
thousands of people into the camps, and
where families were forcibly ripped apart
– mothers and children being taken to gas
chambers, and fathers being forced into
The LGB
Holocaust
hard labour – one of the teachers grabbed
my arm, and started to cry.
“This morning I had an argument with my
little boy about his school lunch. I scolded
him. I wish I’d told him I loved him before he
went to school.”
Our tour of Birkenau, aside from occasional
respectful descriptions from our tour guide,
was mostly taken in silence. There are no
words. The tour of Birkenau culminated
in a memorial ceremony held next to the
destroyed crematoria II, led by Rabbi Barry
Marcus of the Central Synagogue, and
pioneer of one-day Auschwitz Birkenau
visits for community groups).
The beautiful ceremony included readings,
and moments of reflection and ended with
every one of us lighting memorial candles
and placing them around the remains of
the crematoria. Every one of us - students,
teachers and visitors - walked the long
walk back to our transport in silence.
“There really
are no words
to describe
the feeling
of walking
through a large
room piled
from floor to
ceiling with
human hair.”
I’d like to extend my personal thanks
to The Holocaust Educational Trust
for inviting me on this important
journey. To find out more about the
fantastic work they do, you can visit
their website at www.het.org.uk
Nazi conceptions of race, gender and
eugenics dictated the Nazi regime’s hostile
policy on homosexuality. Within days of
Hitler becoming Chancellor repression
against gay men and lesbians commenced.
Unknown numbers of German gay men and
lesbians fled abroad, entered into marriages
in order to appear to conform to Nazi
ideological norms, and experienced severe
psychological trauma. The police established
lists of homosexually active persons. Records
from 1937-1940 include the names of over
90,000 suspects. Significant numbers of gay
men were arrested, of whom an estimated
50,000 received severe jail sentences in
brutal conditions. Most homosexuals were
not sent to concentration camps but were
instead exposed to inhumane treatment in
police prisons. There they could be subjected
to hard labour and torture, or be executed or
experimented upon.
The Nazis dehumanised the prisoners in
their camps and some of their prisons by
giving them a symbol, which coded them
according to the reason for their detention,
and assigned them a number to replace their
name. Some 10-15,000 people were deported
for being gay to concentration camps. Many,
but not all, were assigned pink triangles. Most
died in the camps, often from exhaustion.
Many were castrated and some subjected to
gruesome medical experiments. Collective
murder actions were undertaken against gay
detainees, exterminating hundreds at a time.
Some people belonged to more than one
targeted group. For example, Jewish gays
wore a yellow triangle and a pink triangle
together.
Paragraph 175 is a documentary film released
in 2000, directed by Rob Epstein and Jeffrey
Friedman, and narrated by Rupert Everett.
The film chronicles the lives of several gay
men and one lesbian who were persecuted
by the Nazis, and is available to buy now.
www.lgf.org.uk OUTNORTHWEST 15
VILLAGE PEOPLE
LOCAL BUSINESSES, CHARITIES AND THE COMMUNITY WORKING TOGETHER!
N
I
E
T
A
H
NO
!
E
G
A
L
L
I
OUR V
January saw The Lesbian &
Gay Foundation (LGF) and The
Village Business Association
(VBA) launch a new awareness
raising campaign, ‘No Hate
in Our Village’. Unveiling the
campaign during Manchester
Hate Crime Awareness Week
2014, it reminds everyone
that hate, whatever it’s form,
is unacceptable and should be
reported.
The LGF work closely with the Greater
Manchester Police (GMP) and the Office
of the Police and Crime Commissioner to
ensure that our community knows that no
incident of hate is acceptable and should
always be reported.
The campaign pulls no punches in terms
of its use of language – it highlights both
the physical and emotional impact that
offensive words such as faggot, dyke, freak,
tranny and greedy can have on the LGB&T
community.
The words chosen for the five posters in
this campaign are sadly heard regularly by
members of the LGB&T community who
are victims of hate crime. They are short,
sharp, and impactful – as is the campaign
message of ‘Report Hate!’
The LGF and the VBA launch a hate crime reporting
campaign for Manchesters famous gay Village.
The LGF said, “We are using these terms
in a positive way to empower individuals
to realise that they shouldn’t have to hear
those words and that whilst we can reclaim
ownership of these words and extinguish
the emotional impact that they can have, we
should also recognise them as hatred and
report them.”
Words may hurt, but the simple action of
reporting hate crime, whether you’re a
victim or a witness, can go a long way
towards tackling the perpetrators of hate and
16 OUTNORTHWEST Support the work of the LGF. Donate online today at www.lgf.org.uk
ensuring that LGB&T people feel safe not
only in the Village, but everywhere else.
Keep an eye out for the posters and stickers
which have been distributed throughout the
Village and you can also see the campaign
banner displayed along Canal Street too. You
can also show your support for the ‘No Hate
in Our Village Campaign’ by downloading
the images for your social media profiles or
downloading the poster and putting it on
display HATE! To download, visit
www.lgf.org.uk/reporthate
REPORT HATE!
You can report homophobic hate crime in
your area either online or by calling 101.
Remember to say: “I want to report a
homophobic hate crime” and make sure
this statement is recorded. Recognising
the crime or incident as homophobic when
reporting it can help with sentencing
at a later date if it is found that the
homophobic element of the incident
has aggravated the offence. You can
also call the LGF on 0845 3 30 3030
(10am-10pm every day) for support and
information. Alternatively, you can report
a crime online via your local police force’s
website. AND REMEMBER, If you or someone
else is in danger then do not hesitate to call 999
ANGELS
HERE TO HELP
Your friendly Village Angels
will of course be out and
about in The Village every
Friday and Saturday night!
Our team of dedicated staff and volunteers
will be out on the streets, laughing in the
face of those minus temperatures and
supporting our community at weekends.
The Village Angels are there to keep people
safe whilst visiting The Village. We are there
for advice and support and are a completely
non-judgmental presence, only interested
in keeping people safe and happy whilst
accessing this space we call home! So if
you find yourself needing help, seek out an
Angel and we will keep you smiling! Here if
you need us!
To find out more about The Village
Angels visit us on www.lgf.org.uk/
Angels. Find us on twitter @LGF_Angels
GAY
AT WAR
Marc Duffy tells ONW about a new series of
documentaries for LGBT History Month
With the hundredth
anniversary of the
outbreak of the First
World War in 2014,
Gaydio is to take a look
at LGBT lives during
conflict for a series of
documentaries to mark
LGBT History Month.
From remembering the sometimes
forgotten LGBT victims of Hitler’s
holocaust to celebrating the
advancement of our armed forces
in allowing openly gay, lesbian,
bisexual and trans people to serve
openly in the military, Gaydio aims
to tell the story of LGBT people
during wartime using a collection of
interviews and monologues.
We will explore the history of the
Pink Triangle, speak to members
of the forces who served under
the ban on LGBT service personnel,
and find out what it was like for
‘effeminate’ men who entertained
the troops on stage both at home
and away at the front line.
Our Gay At War series will also
tell the story of Alan Turing - the
mathematician who, at Bletchley
Park, cracked the German Enigma
Code, bringing about the end of
World War 2. A forgotten war hero
who until recently was disgraced
with a conviction for being
homosexual.
Working with the Imperial War
Museum North, the People’s History
Museum, Manchester University
and the Army Careers Service we
hope our documentaries will inform,
entertain, dispel any myths and do
proud.
We hope you will join us for Gay At
War: LGBT Lives In Conflict, starting
on Monday 24 February.
Catch the Exchange every Monday
to Thursday from 8pm on Gaydio in
Manchester (88.4fm) and at...
www.gaydio.co.uk
www.lgf.org.uk OUTNORTHWEST 17
UP YOUR WAY
COMING
UP IN
MARCH
LGBT HISTORY
MONTH
FEBRUARY SEES A NUMBER OF EVENTS MARKING LGBT
HISTORY MONTH ACROSS THE NORTH WEST.
for Homosexual Equality’.
[email protected]
‘I’M COMING OUT’
Thursday 20th February 6.30 - 8.30pm
Entertainment and guest speakers including
Lancaster’s very own Kitchen Collective plus ‘Out
in the Bay’s’ first ever showing of their production
‘Drag me to the Disco’ and the launch of a new
exhibition from Age Concern Central Lancashire
~ ‘Le Freak’ looking at the influence of popular
music on the lives of Lancashire’s older LGBT
Community. Lancaster Library, Market Square.
Lancaster. [email protected]
THE GAY CENTRE
1988 TO NOW
Stories Sharing Day
Saturday 1st March (9.30-5pm)
If you have ever been involved in the Gay
Centre/ LGBT centre on Sidney Street in
Manchester, come and share your stories.
Young people, trained as oral historians
will run interactive groups and 1-2-1
interviews to gather stories for films and
a book. Free food all day! Bring objects
to be photographed to help everyone
reminisce. The Joyce Layland LGBT Centre,
49-51 Sidney St, Manchester, M1 7HB.
Tel: 07813981338 or
[email protected]
LGBT ADOPTION AND
FOSTERING WEEK
3-9th March 2014
Agencies across the UK hold events
specifically for LGBT prospective parents,
as part of LGBT Adoption and Fostering
Week. You can also find a list of agencies
that provide membership of New Family
Social, the UK support group for LGBT
adopters and foster carers.
www.lgbtadoptfosterweek.org.uk/
QUEER CONTACT 2014
Through 6-15 February 2014.
Queer Contact will feature Opera North and The
Tiger Lillies, Joey Arias, Jackie Kay, Craig Hill,
The House of Suarez Vogue Ball, My Bad Sister,
exhibitions from Pam Van-Damned and Ian
Brooke. Tickets from £3. Available via contactmcr.
com or 0161 274 0600.
QUEER MEDIA FESTIVAL
MediaCityUK - 7th February 2014
–12:00pm - 3:30pm
Short films and videos relating to gender and
sexuality issues at the Digital Performance Lab,
one of Europe’s largest HD screens. University
of Salford, MediaCityUK Plot B4, Salford Quays,
M50 2HE. https://www.facebook.com/
Qmediacityukfestival
PEOPLE’S HISTORY MUSEUM
4th February – 1:15pm - 3:00pm
Special tour of the museum’s main galleries. Stick
around and browse through LGBT archive material
in the ‘Delve and Discover ‘event, (2.00pm –
3.00pm). Left Bank Spinningfields, Manchester M3
3ER. Suitable for adults, Booking advised, contact
0161 838 9190 or [email protected]
UPROAR OVER ‘THAT CLUB’
Saturday 15th February - 2-4pm
Towneley Hall Museum, Burnley .Find out more
about a controversial public meeting ‘Homosexuals
and Civil Liberties’ and the campaign to set up
a gay nightclub in Burnley in 1971. Speakers
include Michael Steed ‘Campaign for Homosexual
Equality’ (CHE) and Peter Scott Presland, author of
‘Amiable Warriors: The History of the Campaign
18 OUTNORTHWEST Support the work of the LGF. Donate online today at www.lgf.org.uk
‘WHAT’S WRONG WITH LGBT
HISTORY MONTH?’
26 February 2014 5:00pm - 7:30pm
Eleanor Rathbone Building, University of Liverpool,
Bedford Street South, Liverpool. This lecture reflects
on the possibilities and the problems of LGBTQ
History Month with Dr Matt Houlbrook, a Senior
Lecturer in Modern British History at the University
of Birmingham. [email protected]
JUSTICE (OUT IN THE CITY)
27 February - 1:30pm - 2:00pm
A presentation of rehearsed readings telling the
story of a group of 28 men who were tried for
homosexual offences in 1936. Suitable for adults.
Booking advised contact 0161 838 9190 or
[email protected]
STOCKPORT LGBT HISTORY MONTH
If you are in the Stockport area People Like Us
Stockport (PLUS) the social group for the local Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans community is holding
many events in the borough for this year’s LGBT
History Month. www.stockportplus.org/ or call
07562 269 558
VADA LGBTQ COMMUNITY
THEATRE COMPANY
27th and 28th February at 7.30pm
Love Notes is a collection of new short plays and
sketches inspired by the 2014 LGBT History Month
theme: music. Thursday 27th February is in the
Castle Hotel, Oldham Street and on Friday 28th
February at the Martin Harris Centre.
For other events happening across the
country, visit: http://lgbthistorymonth.org.uk/
IN YOUR WORDS!
TAMESIDE
RENASSAINCE
A social and support group for learning and
non-learning disabled people who are LGB or T.
Meet new people in a safe place or talk about
issues and socialise at The Ladysmith Pub in
Ashton on the last Wednesday of the month
from 6pm to 8pm. For more information
call James and Tracy on 07500992643
Or Ali and Steve on 0161 308 3699
LIVERPOOL ONLINE
Anyone wanting to find out what’s happening
in Liverpool should check out the Stanley Street
Quarter website for all the latest news on the
urban quarter at the heart of Liverpool’s LGBT
community. http://stanleystqtr.co.uk/
Rainbow Noir organising team: (L to R) Stephanie, Jess, Christina & Chloe
RAINBOW
NOIR
THERE’S AN EXCITING YEAR AHEAD FOR RAINBOW NOIR
2014 is going to be an exciting
year for Rainbow Noir. There are
double celebrations this February
as the group celebrate their first
birthday and the success of a
recent funding bid too! As the
group look back on events from
the past 12 months Jess and
Christina from the organising team
wanted to share their personal
highlights.
everyone and seeing the formation of our fab
Rainbow Noir family”. – Christina
“Rainbow Noir has had a fantastic year; for
me, there have been a number of small but
significant highlights: the cultural exchanges
sessions, which allowed members to share
their stories. Having one of the members
announce that she had been granted her
stay in the UK shortly after we wrote a letter
of support for her case. Having the space to
watch films like “Pariah” and “The Peculiar
Kind”, which explore the experiences of
LGBT people of colour. And getting to know
Continuing the success of their first year
Rainbow Noir have their goals set high for
2015 – their main aims being to organise a
group trip to UK’s Black Pride in the summer,
holding more social events and get- togethers
and increasing their visibility and membership
throughout the North West.
“It’s been quite a year. Every session was
something to celebrate. A year of Rainbow
Noir still going strong proves why a group like
this is needed. Being of colour and identifying
as queer can be a lonely place for so many
reasons, I’m glad Rainbow Noir is able to offer
breathing space for Manchester’s Black LGBTQI
community. From watching films to playing
games and enjoying food together, it’s been a
pleasure to be involved with such an important
community group”. - Jess
Rainbow Noir meet once a month at the
LGBT Centre on Sidney St, for more info
e-mail: [email protected] or
visit facebook.com/rainbownoirmcr
VIA FUNDRAISER
SUPPORT LOCAL
GROUPS.
Big thanks to Via who arranged a fundraiser
for small LGBT organisations in Manchester over
Christmas. They raised money for Butterflies,
Manchester Parents Group and LGBT Youth
North West who run the Lesbian and Gay Youth
Manchester group.
www.lgbtyouthnorthwest.org.uk
BEING +
George House Trust has launched a new project
to help make their services more accessible and
beneficial to gay and bisexual men who are
in the North West and living with HIV. The four
areas of being+ are sessions, socials, courses
and convenience. To find out more go to:
http://ght.org.uk/beingpositive
CUMBRIA LGBT
TELEPHONE
HELPLINE
OutREACH Cumbria has launched their new telephone
helpline open every Thursday evening from 7-9.30pm.
From a landline call 0800 345 7440 or from
a mobile call 0300 123 7440
WIRRAL LGBT
NETWORK
How do you think life could be improved for
LGBT people in Wirral? What do you think LGBT
people in Wirral should be able to expect from
all services? What do you think LGBT people in
Wirral need? [email protected]
www.lgf.org.uk OUTNORTHWEST 19
TALKING POSITIVE
IN THE FIRST OF A NEW SERIES WE INVITE GUEST COLUMNISTS TO TALK ABOUT THEIR
EXPERIENCES OF LIVING WITH HIV AND MOST IMPORTANTLY TO TELL THEIR STORY, THEIR WAY.
“I AM HIV
POSITIVE.”
“Deciding to ‘talk positive’, to speak up
about my diagnosis, was not an easy
decision to make. I am a gay man in
my late twenties, have always been
open about my sexuality and I was
diagnosed more than two years ago.
Still, when offered the opportunity to be
published with my full name and photo or
anonymously, I decided that I am not quite
ready for a public statement yet.
There is a personal story that accompanies
the statement “I am HIV positive”; which
invariably influences when, how and with
whom we choose to share our status. I
was diagnosed under somewhat difficult
circumstances. A visit to A & E for what
I thought was a bad tonsillitis revealed
that I was HIV positive, with a CD4-count
of 63 and pneumonia. After a week in
an Infectious Diseases Ward, I returned
home. I had a long way to recovery, I
was HIV positive and I was in an abusive
relationship. I had to learn quickly enough
that talking was the way to get the
support I needed.
I was spending a year learning a language
abroad and my partner had come with
me. I knew no one there except my partner
and a couple of people I attended classes
with. The first time that I ‘talked positive’,
was when I opened up about my status to
a classmate who I knew was volunteering
at a local charity for People Living with HIV.
She was extremely kind and supportive
and introduced me to the charity’s therapist
who saw me weekly for six months. He
was a counsellor and a second father to
me during that time, helping me to find the
strength to first stand up to my abusive
partner, to move to a different apartment
and then slowly come into terms with my
diagnosis. My new friend, the Volunteer
Coordinator at the charity and my therapist
formed an ad-hoc family and a protective
circle, encouraging me to talk again, to
speak up and heal.
The most difficult thing for me with
accepting my status was, and continues
to be, the amount of worry it would
cause my family if they found out. They
lived between London and Paris in the
1980s and witnessed first-hand the
devastating effects of the AIDS crisis, losing
a friend from AIDS and they would, rather
hysterically, worry about my status. They
are the primary reason why I am not ready
to publicly proclaim it.
I have, however been speaking up, I have
been ‘talking positive’ at the micro level.
After finding the support that I needed
post-diagnosis, I began to talk. I have
talked to nurses, doctors, therapists,
friends, partners, and, of course, a litany
of strangers, including academics, authors,
filmmakers, artists and volunteers. I have
www.lgf.org.uk/men
20 OUTNORTHWEST Support the work of the LGF. Donate online today at www.lgf.org.uk
met courageous people who have shared
their personal narratives of HIV with me. A
few are completely out of the ‘HIV closet’,
others have just recently been diagnosed,
others are supporting friends and/or
family who are HIV-positive. All of them are
dealing with the reality of Living with HIV
on a daily basis, the few pills a day, the
minor ailments and the illnesses. I have also
begun supporting others whenever I can,
and made a promise to myself: I will keep
‘talking positive’ and encourage others to
do so.
Not all of us are ready, willing or
comfortable with being completely and
publicly open about our HIV status, but still,
we talk.”
This is dedicated to Jaime, el amigo que
me salvo la vida, Cynthia, and Lucio with
eternal gratitude.
If you would like support on any of
the issues raised here please contact
The Lesbian & Gay Foundation’s
Helpline on 0845 30 30 30 or if
you would like to share your story
contact: [email protected]
GAY & BISEXUAL MEN
SAME DAY
HIV TESTING
EVERY WEDNESDAY
12.00PM - 2.00PM*
AT THE LGF
NUMBER 5 RICHMOND STREET
MANCHESTER
*BUT GET HERE EARLY, THE LAST TEST IS AT 1.30PM
FOR MORE INFORMATION CALL US: (10AM-10PM)
0845 3 30 30 30
DO YOU
KNOW YOUR
HIV STATUS?
Reg. Charity No. 1070904
www.lgf.org.uk/testing
OUTSPOKEN
WHO IS
RAC HEL
SNOW-MILLER?
Rachel Snow-Miller is based
in Prestwich and works for
NHS England developing
networks and supporting
connectivity. Over the last
few months she has been
working with The Lesbian
& Gay Foundation on their
report into the health needs of
lesbian and bisexual women,
‘Beyond babies and breast
cancer’, which was launched in
January, and offering strategic
advice on the Pride in Practice
programme. She is in a long
term relationship and has two
fabulous children.
Sum yourself up in three words...
Passionate, disorganised, honest.
If we gave you £1 million, what
would you do with it?
Work with a charity to try to maximize
the money? Buy a big house in the
country? Get a personal trainer? Shop
A LOT. Was it just £1m?
Do you have a favourite quote/
motto?
“If I am not for myself, who will be for
me? And when I am for myself, what
am ‘I’?” Hillel the Elder
If you could change one thing
about the world what would it be?
I would want social justice everywhere
for everyone about everything. It’s a
bit like wishing for world peace with a
RACHEL
SNOW-MILLER
modern twist I guess but humans are
so inhumane to one another and I wish
we were kinder and more generous to
each other. We are not infallible.
What food could you not live
without?
Hmmm, I did give up food for a while
and managed so not sure what to say
here. If I could never have a nice glass
of red wine again I would be very, very
sad.
Which animal would you most like
to be and why?
A pedigree stud cat!
What’s your guilty pleasure?
Cheesy music no one else likes very
loud in the car on the motorway… Tom
Jones, Billy Bragg, Steps, Glee and Skunk
22 OUTNORTHWEST Support the work of the LGF. Donate online today at www.lgf.org.uk
Anansie have all appeared on that
soundtrack
If you were a biscuit, which one
would you be?
Jammy Dodger of course.
If you were a superhero, what
would be your super-power?
Invisibility.
Where is your favourite place in
the world?
I haven’t found it yet.
Tell us a secret about yourself…
I am much nicer than you think, once you
get to know me.
The best thing about being a woman...
Curves.
FOR WOMEN
LET’S GET
SOCIABLE!
ACTIVITIES
FOR
WOMEN
IN THE
NORTH
WEST
We’re really lucky in the
North West to have a
lively and vibrant LGBT
community, with lots
happening both on and off
the scene.
Yet many bars, clubs and groups can be
male dominated. Whilst we love our male
friends, it can be a little intimidating
to be the only woman in a room full
of testosterone (not to mention a little
disappointing if you’re looking to meet a
special someone!)
That’s why The LGF has three social and
support groups for lesbian and bisexual
women (Carousel, Stepping Stones and
Bloomers) and why we have monthly
workshops where lesbian and bisexual
women can get together in a fun
environment and learn something new
but there’s also lots more out there if you
know where to look...
From Lunettes in South Lakes and
Lancaster to Liverpool Women’s Book
Group to Gay Women in Cheshire there
are social groups and events for women
going on across the North West.
Sadly we don’t have space to mention
everything that’s happening – if you
want to know more go to www.lgf.org.
uk/register to sign up for our monthly
women’s e-bulletin or visit the listings
section at the back of outnorthwest to
find a local group.
UPCOMING LGF EVENTS AND ACTIVITIES FOR LESBIAN
AND BISEXUAL WOMEN
SKILLS
WORKSHOPS
FOR WOMEN
Want to have learn something new, meet
new people and socialise in a friendly, nonscene environment? Look no further than
The Lesbian & Gay Foundation’s monthly
skills workshops for lesbian and bisexual
women! These practical sessions are free
and open to anyone who self-identifies as
a lesbian or bisexual woman but they’re
pretty popular so make sure you book in
advance by emailing [email protected]
Our next three sessions are:
Saturday 15th February 2-5pm
How To Be A Domestic Goddess
Make Do And Mend Around Your
Home
Ever wanted to be more self-reliant?
Our ‘How To Be A Domestic Goddess’
workshop will teach you all you need to
know to fix those little niggles around your
24 OUTNORTHWEST Support the work of the LGF. Donate online today at www.lgf.org.uk
home. From bleeding a radiator to sewing a
hem, this practical session will turn you into
a handy-woman extraordinaire!
Saturday 15th March 2-5pm
Happy Hands! Intro to British Sign
Language
Join us for a fun and relaxed session,
which will teach you the basics of British
Sign Language. You’ll learn to introduce
yourself and to fingerspell, as well as
finding out more about d/Deaf culture.
Saturday 12th April 2-5pm
Eggcellent Egg Decorating
Join us for a pre-Easter craft session where
we’ll be learning how to make highly ornate
decorated goose eggs. Perfect for caloriefree Easter presents!
Previous women’s workshops have
included roller derby, screen-printing
and circus skills. To find our more
and to book a place on any of there
workshops, e-mail [email protected]
WAMM,
BAM, THANKYOU MA’AM!
The UK’s only sports and social event for
lesbian and bisexual women who like to
get wet together returns to Manchester! In
2011, Manchester played host to the UK’s
first ever swimming event specifically for
lesbian and bisexual women.
Female swimmers from across the UK and Europe
descended on our fair city for a weekend of
swimming and socialising at WAMM (Women’s
Aquatic Meet Manchester). Now, three years after
the inaugural event, WAMM is back and we want
you to be part of it. The swimming competition
is designed to encourage novice as well as
experienced swimmers of all abilities to take part.
As well as traditional swimming races, there will
be more unusual events, such as an inflatables
race! The emphasis of the whole weekend is on
getting together, networking, making friends and
enjoying participation in sport for women.
WAMM is a complete weekend of sports and
entertainment including a welcome evening with
registration, competition with complimentary lunch,
women’s celebration party and a relaxed brunch.
Hosted accommodation will also be available on a
first come first served basis.
WAMM 2 will take place in Manchester on 6th-8th
June. You can find out more and register online at
www.pridegames.org.uk/tournaments/swim.
And if you’d like to get a bit of training in before
the big event, Northern Wave (Manchester’s
LGBT Swimming Club) have a women-only swim
session every Wednesday at Chorlton Leisure
Centre – go to northernwave.org
VAGINA
MONOLOGUES
Another chance to catch this groundbreaking show
This exciting production of
the Vagina Monologues
aims to raise awareness
and raise money to support
The LGF and also support
the international ‘1 Billion
Uprising’ campaign.’ 1 Billion
Uprising’ is a call to action
based on the statistic that
1 in 3 women on the planet
will be beaten or raped
during her lifetime.
The Vagina Monologues began as
vagina interviews, which became
vagina monologues. Over two hundred
women were interviewed from aged
6 to 85, professionals, sex workers,
black, white, Asian, Hispanic, Jewish,
married women, lesbians, single
women …all women!
And do you know what was found?
Women secretly love to talk about their
vaginas! Some of the monologues are
“Wouldn’t
have missed
it!”
“Brilliant night
and very
moving.”
based on one woman’s story, some of
the monologues are based on several
women’s stories surrounding the same
theme. Everything is covered from hair,
periods, mutilation, orgasms, sex and
abuse.
As a female viewer it will leave you
feeling empowered as a male viewer
you’ll feel in awe!
www.lgf.org.uk/
sugarandspice
www.lgf.org.uk OUTNORTHWEST 25
ARTS
QUEER CO
Interviews by Rachel Bottomley
JACKIE KAY
IE KAY + GUESTS
YOUNG ENIGMA, JACK 30pm
, 7:
Tuesday 11th February
identify themselves as gay – say someone
like Greta Garbo or Marlene Dietrich – I’d love
to have dinner with them. I’m quite fascinated
by women from that era who dressed up in
men’s suits. And I’d like to have had dinner
with James Baldwin, the African-American
novelist – I think his fiction is fantastic. Oh,
and I’d also like to have had dinner with
Bessie Smith who was bisexual and a blues
singer – she had lots of affairs with women.
Talking about lesbian heroes, I would also
like to meet Audre Lorde the black American
poet – I’d love to meet with her and see how
she’s doing, and the same with Julia Darling,
a great friend of mine who died nine years
ago – I’d like to have dinner with them and
see how they’re doing.
Queer Contact 2014 s
celebrates LGBT art
and culture 6th15th February as
part of LGBT History
Month in Greater e
Manchester, with th
best local, national
and international
talent.
rth
features Opera No
This year’s festival
e),
ov
(ab
ias
Joey Ar
and The Tiger Lillies,
The House of Suarez
l,
Hil
ig
Cra
y,
Jackie Ka
in, exhibitions from
Ru
Vogue Ball, Mother’s
s
and Lee Baxter, plu
Pam Van-Damned
’ve
we
W,
ON
s issue of
much more. For thi
y and and Patience
Ka
kie
Jac
to
spoken
of
part in an evening
Agbabi about taking
me
the
y around the
live literature/poetr
by local young LGBT
ed
rat
cu
of identity,
ung Enigma.
writers collective Yo
out the diverse range
To find out more ab
ing place at Contact,
of festival events tak
the
hester, head over to
Oxford Road, Manc
ur tickets!
website and book yo
contactmcr.com
So, tell us what you’ve got in store for
Queer Contact!
I’m doing a reading from my most recent
poetry and prose. My most recent book of
stories is called ‘Reality, Reality’ – each of the
characters reality is challenged in some way
or another - some of the stories are really
funny and some are very sad, but they’re all
about people whose lives are on the borders
or on the edge in some way.
The show is happening during LGBT
History month - which LGB&T historical
figure would you most like to have
dinner with?
That’s a good question! Well it’s funny
because some people might not necessarily
A lot of your writing reflects voices
that aren’t often heard in society – do
you think it’s important for your work
to give a voice to these people or
issues?
Yes I do – I’m interested in writing the books
that I don’t get to read – I remember Toni
Morrison saying that too – that you write
what you can’t easily find to read. So I don’t
find in any books any black, lesbian, Scottish
characters – so I like to create black, gay,
Scottish characters. People automatically
think they’re autobiographical but they’re not
any more autobiographical than, say, Ian
McEwan’s characters would be. I think it’s
interesting to hold up a mirror if you’re already
from a minority group.
This issue of outnorthwest is
celebrating International Women’s Day
– what’s the best thing about being a
woman?
Gosh! I think women have a different intuition
to men, on the whole. I think women face
very difficult emotional things head-on…
emotional intelligence is a huge advantage
of being a woman. But also, I really love
women’s bodies, so another advantage is
female anatomy! Intellectually and physically
I really like being a woman. But I also really
ARTS
NTACT
“Whilst you have
“I like noticing
the differences some responsibility
as a writer, you can’t
between men
be creative if you’re
and women,
constantly worrying
and for me it’s about offending people.”
been fantastic
having a son. I PATIENCE AGBABI
have a 25 year
old who’s very
supportive of
me being a
lesbian mum.”
So, tell us what you’ve got in store for
Queer Contact!
I’m doing a poetry writing workshop in the
afternoon on the theme of Identity followed
by a performance in the evening. I’ll be
performing some of my greatest LGB&T hits
and some new poems from my forthcoming
collection, Telling Tales (Canongate, April
2014), a contemporary Canterbury Tales.
love being the mother of a son as well – I like
noticing the differences between men and
women, and for me it’s been fantastic having
a son – I have a 25 year old who’s very
supportive of me being a lesbian mum. I really
like the differences between men and women,
but if I had to choose my life again, I’d definitely
be a woman, whereas I know a lot of women
who would choose to be a man, or who feel
uncomfortable as a woman…but I don’t feel
uncomfortable in any way whatsoever. I do
think it’s important to know that we’ve all got
female and male sides within us, and that we
run our society with such a strict gender divide
that it makes people feel that they have to
choose , whereas I actually feel that it’s good
to mix things up a bit. That’s why I’d like to
meet Greta Garbo or Marlene Dietrich – it’s
great to have ambiguity and androgyny and
to have people mix up what it means to be a
woman or a man.
Young Enigma, Jackie Kay & Guests takes place
on 11th February at 7.30pm. To book tickets
(£9/£5), visit www.contactmcr.com/
youngenigma
Have you worked with Young Enigma or
any of the other performers before?
This will be my first time working with Young
Enigma but I’ve been mentoring Adam Lowe
on the Jerwood-Arvon mentoring Scheme for
the past year.
Do you feel pressure as a black LGB
writer to put out certain messages
through your work?
I did when I was a practising lesbian, I felt
as if I must speak for the whole community!
That’s impossible. But now I’m a married (to
a man) with two kids bisexual I don’t feel the
same pressure. However, I endeavour to have
gay characters in my writing, some overt,
some covert. It doesn’t have to be issuebased, some of it can simply celebratory.
I love writing in the voice of a camp gay
man but realise this may be conforming
to a 1970s stereotype. Whilst you have
some responsibility as a writer, you can’t be
creative if you’re constantly worrying about
offending people.
IE KAY + GUESTS
YOUNG ENIGMA, JACK
, 7:30pm
Tuesday 11th February
A lot of your writing reflects voices
that aren’t often heard in society – do
you think it’s important for your work
to give a voice to these people or
issues?
I’m not sure I write in voices that aren’t often
heard in society, but I would say voices that
aren’t heard in poetry. Certainly not poetry
that’s published in books. My forthcoming
book has quite a few working-class
characters, men behind bars, even a dog!
Certainly it’s important to do this, you want to
challenge the reader, make them think, know
they might identify with the character and
the issues. Also, it’s important to challenge
yourself as a writer, not to write the first thing
that comes into your head. It was a massive
leap for me to take on male voices in the new
work.
ct
TIckets for all Queer Conta
g
events are available (startin
ite
at only £3) from the webs
lling
contactmcr.com, or by ca
the Box Office on
0161 274 0600
www.lgf.org.uk OUTNORTHWEST 27
WELLBEING
THANK
YOU FOR BEING
IT’S TIME
TO TALK
ABOUT
MENTAL
HEALTH
We talk to the
new Time to
Change National
LGB&T Equalities
Co-ordinator,
Darren Bee
to find out
why ending
stigma and
discrimination
around mental
illness is so
important for
our community
and how you
can make a
difference by
having your own
conversations.
Can you tell us a bit about
your role at Time to Change
and what it entails?
Time to Change is England’s biggest
mental health anti-stigma programme run
by the charities Mind and Rethink Mental
Illness. I work with LGB&T communities
and organisations letting them know what
Time to Change is all about. I organise
networking events across England with
the support of individuals, community
groups and organisations. The networking
events act as a platform for people to
understand a bit more about the campaign
28 OUTNORTHWEST Support the work of the LGF. Donate online today at www.lgf.org.uk
and to start their own conversations about
mental health. We also have a network
of champions who support the campaign
and I encourage and support them to get
involved with all aspects of the campaign.
I support new and existing champions
through a process of mentoring and
training so they feel more confident having
conversations with the public. I encourage
people from the LGB&T community to share
their story with others, which helps to
break down stigma and encourages others
to seek support and have a conversation.
Why is it important for
Time to Change to have a
specialist LGB&T worker?
It’s important to have someone within this
role that can do targeted work with one
individual community and the needs for
each community vary. This is why Time to
Change has lots of different regional and
equality coordinators so we can make sure
that we are reaching lots of people from
WELLBEING
“People from certain
communities including
LGB&T people, experience
multiple layers of stigma and
discrimination due to their
sexual orientation or gender.
They may also have difficulty
accessing the targeted
services they need.”
different areas of the country and from
different communities. It’s important to
have somebody who understands these
differences and has a good understanding
of the people we hope to talk to. Whether
that’s knowledge of events with LGB&T
communities or the media channels LGB&T
people consume. It’s important people feel
they have someone they can relate to so
they feel confident in sharing their story or
getting involved with the work of Time to
Change.
Do you think LGB&T
people with mental health
problems have a different
experience of stigma and
discrimination?
One in four people will experience a mental
health problem, and of these people 9
out of ten will experience stigma and
discrimination due to their mental health.
However, people from certain communities
including LGB&T people, experience
multiple layers of stigma and discrimination
due to their sexual orientation or gender.
They may also have difficulty accessing the
targeted services they need.
On 6th February, the LGF
are holding an event as part
of the first ‘Time to Talk’ day.
How can people get involved
in this in their area?
As part of Time to Talk Day, Time to
Change is encouraging people to have
a conversation about mental health
and we are hoping to achieve a million
conversations. We need as many people
as possible to take part and they can get
involved by registering their interest on the
Time to Change website. We’ll be sending
out various resources for the day such as
leaflets and tea bags to give people all the
tools and information they need to start
their conversations.
If you could give us one tip
for starting a conversation
about mental health, what
would it be?
There is a top tips card available on the
Time to Change website to help people
get those conversations started. The first
place to start is probably keeping in regular
contact whether this is by phone, text or
meeting up.
For more information please visit
www.time-to-change.org.uk/
talkday or follow TIme to Change on
Twitter @timetochange or Facebook
www.facebook.com/timetochange
Ending Homophobia,
Empowering People
www.lgf.org.uk
Registered Charity No.1070904
If you’re feeling
concerned about your
own, or someone
else’s mental health,
you can talk to us.
We provide help and
guidance for a range
of issues, in a friendly
and supportive
environment. More
details can be found at
www.lgf.org.uk/
get-support or you
can call us on 0845 3
30 30 30 365 days a
year, 10am – 10pm
23
www.lgf.org.uk OUTNORTHWEST 29
SEX TALK
Ask the Doc
Dr. Ben Goorney works at The Goodman
Centre, which is located in Lance Burn
Health Centre, Salford. They offer a fully
integrated sexual health service with
contraception, STI testing and treatment
as well as being the specialist HIV clinic for
Salford. We asked for your sexual health
questions for Dr. Ben, and he’s very kindly
answered a selection
of them for this issue of
outnorthwest.
“How do you test for
Gonorrhoea – I don’t want
an umbrella down my willy!”
Provided you are symptomless most clinics
now offer the molecular tests or NAATs tests
for Chlamydia and Gonorrhoea which can be
carried out on a first catch urine for men and a
self taken vaginal swab for women . You need to
make sure you attend with bladder held for at
least one hour! If the test comes back positive for
Gonorrhoea you will be offered a further swab test
to properly identify the infection by culture and
to assess antibiotic sensitivities. Please dispel all
mythological ideas of an “umbrella” it’s a tiny thin
loop or swab which is inserted at tip of the penis!
30 OUTNORTHWEST Support the work of the LGF. Donate online today at www.lgf.org.uk
“Am I still at risk of getting
Gonorrhoea if I let my
partner (who is infected) cum
in my mouth but I spit?”
Because gonorrhoea infects the lining or membrane
of the penile urethra the organisms are transferred
to the membranes at back of the throat or “pharynx”
during oral sex irrespective of ejaculation. So “spitting“
should not be regarded as protective. However there
are many different flavoured condoms out there
which would be.
“Why does having
Gonorrhoea increase my
likelihood of catching HIV or
any other STI?”
Because any STI causing inflammation or ulceration
increases certain cell populations that can transfer
HIV more readily across the lining of the urethra
or rectum and into blood, thus increasing the risk
of acquiring HIV. Gonorrhea of the penis will also
increase the risk of transmission by increasing HIV
viral load in semen. Likewise other STI,s notably
Syphilis, LGV and Hepatitis C may also be more
susceptible . So whatever your HIV status make sure
you have regular sexual health checks at your local
clinic and keep the genital tract healthy.
“If someone has Gonorrhoea in
their throat and they give me
oral sex without a condom can I
catch it from them?”
This is probably now one of the commonest routes of
transmission we see in our clinics of penile gonorrhoea
acquired through oral sex.
“Is Gonorrhoea becoming
incurable?”
Over the last 50 years Gonorrhoea has successfully
developed resistance to most of the major classes
of antibiotics including, Sulphonamides, Penicillins,
Quinolones and more latterly certain Cephalosporins. In
fact we have only limited reliable treatment left. The root
cause is probably widespread inappropriate antibiotic
usage and global travel enabling resistant strains to
evolve. Which is why it’s vital that if you are diagnosed or
worried you may have picked up the infection to seek
proper management at your local sexual health clinic.
“If the test results come back
positive for Gonorrhoea what
treatment should I expect?”
Provided you have no major antibiotic allergies, you will
be offered an injection of “Ceftriaxone” which is usually
mixed with local anaesthetic and is actually less painful
than most other injections into the buttock. In addition
several tablets by mouth of Azithromycin to increase
the effectiveness of the treatment. Because it can take
up to 7 days for infection to be cleared and therefore
potentially are still infective, you will be asked to abstain
from sex for that period of time!
“I have a friend who has been
recently diagnosed with HIV.
He’s coming round to stay for a
few days and I was wondering
if there’s anything I need to
know or do for them or be
aware of?”
There is no risk whatsoever from someone with HIV in a
normal social or domestic environment. The only caveat
being to avoid anything likely to result in contact with
their blood. So best not to share razors or toothbrushes
etc and if you have any open skin wounds to cover
up. Any spillages of blood or body fluids can be wiped
normally with household bleach or hypochlorite. Just
relax and make it positive experience for your friend!
Gonorrhoea
“Hard to spell,
easy to catch!”
Data collected from a
variety of sources by Public
Health England highlights
that in 2012, there were
approximately 450,000
diagnoses of sexually
transmitted infections
(STIs) made in England.
The number of new diagnoses
of gonorrhoea increased by
21% overall. Large increases in
STI diagnoses were seen in men
who have sex with men (MSM),
including a 37% increase in
gonorrhoea diagnoses (from 7,851
to 10,754 diagnoses over a year).
A number of different factors are
likely to have contributed to the
sharp rise in diagnoses among
MSM. In 2011, a new code was
introduced in GUM clinics to further
distinguish gonorrhoea diagnoses
by site of infection, i.e. genital, rectal
or pharyngeal. More screening of
potentially asymptomatic extragential (rectal and pharyngeal)
sites in MSM using highly sensitive
Nucleic Acid Amplification Tests
(NAATs), in response to new
gonorrhoea testing guidance
and the Lumphogranuloma
venereum (LGV) epidemic, will have
significantly improved detection of
gonococcal infections. Furthermore,
reporting of sexual orientation has
improved in recent years, leading
to a greater number of diagnoses
being assigned to MSM than
previously.
Nevertheless, the large increase
in the number of gonorrhoea
diagnoses in MSM over the last
year suggests that on-going high
levels of unsafe sex is leading
to more STI transmission in the
MSM population. High levels of
gonorrhoea transmission are
of particular concern, as data
from the Gonoccocal Resistance
to Antimicrobials Surveillance
Programme (GRASP) shows the
emergence of gonnoccal isolates
with decreased susceptibility to
Cefixime (an antibiotic used to
treat infections caused by bacteria)
among MSM. To clarify, whilst
the large increase in number of
gonorrhoea diagnoses in MSM over
the last year is in part attributed
to an increase in testing in this
population, on-going high levels of
unsafe sexual behaviour are likely
contributing to this increase.
Find out more about The LGFs
Gonorrhoea campaign by
visiting:
www.lgf.org.uk/hardtospell
For more information about sexual
health clinics in Greater Manchester
you can visit www.lgf.org.uk/testing
for information on gay and bisexual
men’s sexual health visit
www.lgf.org.uk/men or you can call
our helpline 10am-10pm, daily, on
0845 3 30 30 30
Ending Homophobia,
Empowering People
www.lgf.org.uk
Registered Charity No.1070904
www.lgf.org.uk OUTNORTHWEST 31
GAY MEN’S HEALTH
CONFIDENT
Photos: Ian Wallis www.ianwallisphotography.co.uk
MARTIN COOPER, Community Engagement Co-ordinator at The Lesbian & Gay Foundation,
asks what happens when the things we think we rely on are taken away...
As part of my role here at the
LGF, I get to have some really
insightful conversations with men
about the lifestyle they lead and
what effects their sexually may
have on it. It’s easy to think that
sexuality starts and ends with
whom you share your sheets
with, but actually it can be
affective in many other aspects
of life.
For some it can affect who their GP is, for
some it influences the gym they decide to go
to and for others (and if we’re being honest,
most of us) it can dictate the company we
prefer to keep.
I was talking to a gentleman recently who
found himself in a difficult situation. He had
met a new group of people who he got
along with very well and they introduced him
to recreational drugs and experimenting with
‘chem sex’ (sex whilst using substances).
He didn’t blame them for anything and he
certainly wasn’t shirking responsibility, but he
had gotten to a point where he really wanted
to make a change.
He had begun injecting and had been
diagnosed as HIV and Hepatitis C positive,
was having difficulty focussing in his job
and had gotten into trouble with his landlord
by not being able to make rent, etc. But,
as much as he wanted to change, he was
facing a real dilemma with regards to his
own happiness and satisfaction. He longed
to be clean of drugs, but was worried that
32 OUTNORTHWEST Support the work of the LGF. Donate online today at www.lgf.org.uk
he simply wouldn’t be able to perform
sexually (or at least reach any sort of sexual
satisfaction) without his, now familiar,
assistance.
People do things that other people
sometimes just can’t understand or relate
to and this can lead them to judge. Its
human nature and it would be naïve to not
recognise that. In turn this can cause people
to do the ‘undesirable’ even more as an act
of rebellion, perhaps. Whatever the reason,
though, these things can become a crutch
for people. It’s an old, familiar friend. It can
be drugs, drink, eating, cruising… anything
that feels familiar and gives an instant buzz.
In this case, the drugs and sex combination
had been a quick fix for him to feel accepted
into a group and opened up a new world of
never before experienced sexual highs, but it
FIND OUT WHERE YOU
CAN GET TESTED BY VISITING
www.lgf.org.uk/testing
“When you reduce
your risky behaviour
there is a void there,
but it is important
to remember that
this void can be filled
with many other
things which are less
risky...”
OPINION JAKEB ARTURIO BRADEN
LOVE &
RESPECT
“Well that’s the festive period over
and we’re now well into 2014.
What I’d like from 2014 is a lot
more love and respect out there.
An organisation called GMFA ran
a campaign around this every
Valentine’s Day, when the focus
was loving and respecting each
other in a non-sexual way. About
what’s in our hearts and minds
rather than just our pants. Taking
the time and effort to get to know
people.
LET’S TALK ABOUT SEX.
came at a price. He now fears he can never
go back to a clean life and achieve the full
sexual highs he experienced previously.
Whenever a ‘crutch’ is taken away, there is
going to be a void. If you stop smoking, for
example, you need to find something to do
to avoid the craving. It is no different with
sex. When you reduce your risky behaviour
there is a void there, but it is important to
remember that this void can be filled with
many other things which are less risky yet
can still tick all the boxes. If you think you
are in a similar situation and want to explore
how you can move forward without your
‘crutch’, come and chat to us either in house
or on our helpline.
You can e-mail [email protected], visit
www.lgf.org.uk or you can call our
helpline 10am-10pm daily on
0845 3 30 30 30
I’d also like to see more dating happening,
with more effort put into sex and sexual
encounters. I can’t help but wonder if certain
gay dating apps have encouraged a laziness
in regards to making an effort to get know
someone a bit first. In the days before
these apps and websites that what guys
generally met each other in bars, usually saw
someone they liked and perhaps struck up a
conversation. A bit of flirting and that sexual
tension of who was going to make a move
first. Reflecting back, I actually quite liked
that and much prefer that to the fact that
someone will message me and expect me to
be in the next cab to theirs and perform like a
porn star. Perhaps in 2014 we could all grow
up a little more and take responsibility in our
lives? In my experience, guys rarely bother to
read profiles, and just assume that if you’re
on these apps you’ll have sex with just about
anyone. So it would be cool if guys actually
dated more and showed interest while out in
the bars, and spent less time on these apps.
I know I will, as it just doesn’t work for me.
Why not talk to each other a bit more when
we’re out? Even if it’s not just for sex, who
knows who you will meet?
SEXUAL HEALTH
It would be great if more guys took control
of our sexual health and HIV status. Testing
regularly (The LGF run regular clinics, the staff
and volunteers are always helpful, I help
out from time to time so I know this to be
true). Talking about our HIV status be +, - or
“It would be cool
if guys actually
dated more and
showed interest
while out in the
bars, and spent
less time on
these smart
phone dating
apps.”
untested. Promoting good sexual health and
good sex as well.
I feel this is the year for us to be coming of
age, growing up as a community a little and
taking responsibility for our lives. There is
always help out there for us to do that, you
can contact The LGF or other organisations.
We’re almost there in terms of equality,
although some way to go in terms of
homophobia. However if we don’t love and
respect each other how we can expect it
from everyone else?”
You can find me here:
www.twitter.com/authenticgayblg
www.youtube.com/user/NorthernFella
www.theauthenticgayblog.wordpress.com/
Happy New Year
Jakeb
www.lgf.org.uk OUTNORTHWEST 33
WELLBEING
THANK YOU FOR BEING
Did you know The
LGF are able to
support anyone
who wants to
apply to have
their historical
convictions
disregarded?
50 years after Alan Turing was
prosecuted for gross indecency
under section 11 of the Criminal
Law Amendment Act 1885, for
admitting having a relationship
with another man when such
acts were still classed as
criminal in the UK, a private
members bill was put before
the House of Lords to grant Alan
Turing a statutory pardon.
After gaining widespread support, the
government opted for a posthumous royal
pardon and this was signed on the 24th
December 2013 with immediate effect.
The consequences of this conviction for
Alan Turing were many and ultimately fatal,
his security clearance was removed thus
not able to carry on the work he loved,
denied entry to the USA, subjected to
hormonal treatment and he committed
suicide.
Although it has taken a posthumous
pardon to remove this conviction from
Alan Turning, in 2010 the government
made a commitment to change the law so
that historical convictions for consensual
gay sex with over 16’s will be treated
as ‘spent’ and will not show on criminal
records checks or referred to in any future
court proceedings. This received royal
assent in May 2012 and commenced on
1st October 2012, very nearly in symmetry
with Turing’s pardon.
These provisions have now made it
possible for anyone to apply to the
Home Secretary for a removal of these
convictions, cautions, warnings and
reprimands for certain behaviours that
would not result in a conviction today. You
CLEAR
YOUR
NAME
would also have to be over 16 at the time
and consenting. These are listed on the
form, and include both civilian and military
provisions. This would, on a successful
application, enable the person to consider
these as ‘spent’ and not have them
disclosed on any checks should they wish
to volunteer for example.
Here at The Lesbian & Gay Foundation,
we are able to support anyone wanting
to apply to have their historical convictions
disregarded. You can access our pop in
service, Monday to Friday 10am-8pm, (last
session 7pm) and we can support you
with printing off forms, completing them,
you must sign them, copying supporting
evidence and anything else that you
require support with. We also have our
legal surgery, every 2nd & 4th Tuesday
6-8pm, no appointment necessary, just
come along, who also may be able help
support you in this process. Our pop
in service is not only here to support
you with your application to have your
34 OUTNORTHWEST Support the work of the LGF. Donate online today at www.lgf.org.uk
historical convictions disregarded, we can
also support you with many other issues
including relationships and family problems
and also offer smoking cessation and brief
alcohol advice. The service is free and
confidential and sessions last up to 40
minutes.
We can also help you to find other support
that may help you as applying to have
these convictions, cautions, warnings and
reprimands removed could be painful and
upsetting as well as positive and enabling.
For further information go to:
www.lgf.org.uk/get-support/popin-service/
www.lgf.org.uk/your-rights/
deletion-of-historical-gayconvictions/
www.gov.uk.delete-historicconviction
!
S
R
E
M
O
O
L
B
LGF GROUPS
Bloomers is The Lesbian & Gay
Foundation’s newest group,
and is aimed at older lesbian
or bisexual women – rather
than put an age minimum
on the group, everyone is
welcome to come along! The
group was established as
older women in the community
were feeding back to us that
there is no space available for
them to socialise and since the
group was started back in July,
we have welcomed over 30
women to the group.
“Great
support
and a
lovely way
to make
friends.”
The group provides a safe, non
judgemental space for women to meet
and chat. It’s really informal, and quite
often people are happy to chat over a
cup of tea and a biscuit. We have had
workshops in the group in the past too,
covering areas such as making positive
changes, and confidence. We’ll also
soon be welcoming a local artist to
deliver an art workshop, which should
be fun!
“Enjoyable,
easy going,
informative.
Relaxed and
friendly.”
Ending Homophobia,
Empowering People
www.lgf.org.uk
Registered Charity No.1070904
DID YOU KNOW THAT A WHOLE RANGE OF DIVERSE GROUPS, FOR
ALL KINDS OF PEOPLE MEET REGULARLY AT THE LGF? IN THIS
ISSUE WE FOCUS ON A GROUP FOR OLDER LESBIAN/BI WOMEN.
If you are thinking about attending the
group, but are a bit nervous, that’s
fine. It can be quite intimidating to walk
into a room full of people you have
never met. The groups’ volunteers will
welcome you, and everyone in the group
is really fun and friendly, there is also
copious amounts of tea or coffee to be
consumed!
“It’s the
place to
be, it’s
great!”
There’s no need to book a place at the
group, simply come along, but if you
would prefer someone to meet you
before, than that’s ok too. Our building is
fully accessible, with wheelchair access,
disabled toilets and a hearing loop in
the group room. We are also able to
organise an interpreter if you need one,
just give us at least a weeks’ notice.
The group is held at The
Lesbian & Gay Foundation on
the first and third Tuesday of
the month, 1pm to 3pm. If
you would like to know what
is going on in the group, the
best way to find out is going
to www.lgf.org.uk/whats-on
then go to the relevant date.
For all other questions and
enquiries, phone
0845 3 30 30 30 or email
[email protected]
www.lgf.org.uk OUTNORTHWEST 35
GIVING SOMETHING BACK
!
D
E
V
L
O
V
N
I
GET
Ending Homophobia,
Empowering People
www.lgf.org.uk
Registered Charity No.1070904
EVERY
PENNY
MAT TERS...
that
It is important to us here at The LGF
ted
you are aware that every penny dona
ering
deliv
into
back
ght
is going strai
our life changing services. One area
we are looking to develop more is our
ne
Befriending work. Isolation for anyo
can
and
ng,
litati
debi
be
can
of any age
other
quite quickly cause depression and
sses.
mental illne
more
Your donations mean we can train
who
volunteers to become ‘Befrienders’
who
le
peop
LGB
t
mee
to
can organise
ntly
are new to the area or perhaps rece
term
long
a
of
out
ing
com
or
bereaved
relationship. They can introduce this
and
person to other LGB people, groups
and
a social scene suitable to their age
it has
interests. This can be life changing,
ng
helped people who were consideri
to
suicide to feel they have something
give
live for, that someone does care and
in
for
up
get
to
g
ethin
som
lly
them litera
the morning.
us
You are part of that, you’re helping
huge
a
say
to
t
wan
we
and
save lives
thank you!
If you would consider becoming a
an
regular donor and helping us make
can
impact on the number of people we
visit
se
plea
th
mon
help each
can
www.lgf.org.uk/donate where you
print
or
ess
proc
e
onlin
an
w
either follo
off a standing order form.
ns
Giving even a little each month mea
and
g
savin
life
our
re
ensu
can
that we
life changing services are around for
years to come.
Debbie
FANCY A
CHALLENGE?
Fancy a challenge? Want to take
ACTION against homophobia? If
you’re looking for an opportunity
to improve yourself in 2014,
why not take up a challenge
for The LGF? By taking part in
a challenge you will be making
a massive contribution to our
mission of Ending Homophobia
and Empowering People. Previous
runners have told us that their
experiences were motivating and
invigorating!
events in
We have places in some of the biggest
ing:
includ
the 2014 running calendar
• The Adidas Silverstone Half
Marathon taking place on 2nd March
g place on
• The Virgin London Marathon takin
13th April
on 25th
• BUPA London 10,000 taking place
•
May
BUPA Great Manchester Run taking place
on 18th May
32 OUTNORTHWEST Support the work of the LGF. Donate online today at www.lgf.org.uk
36
support
As part of ‘Team LGF’ we can give you
h your
reac
you
and advice along the way to help
you a
send
will
e
s. W
training and fundraising goal
ing
train
to
es
guid
es
includ
h
welcome pack whic
ul
usef
also
and
run,
your
for
fit
ng
and getti
receive a
fundraising tips. Every runner will also
If you
well.
as
top
ing
free Enough is Enough! runn
then
–
list
our
on
isn’t
that
run
have a place in a
can
You
!
team
our
join
to
you
for
love
we’d still
ide you
fundraise for The LGF and we will prov
.
need
with all the resources you
ugh
Its important to bear in mind that altho
r of the
registration has not yet opened for eithe
ing
oach
appr
fast
are
s
BUPA races, closing date
the
and
thon
Mara
on
Lond
n
for both the Virgi
tration
Adidas Silverstone Half Marathon. Regis
uary
Febr
closes on 31st January and 14th
contacting
respectively, so please don’t delay in
run.
to
like
t
migh
us if you think you
contact
If you would like to get involved please
il:
ema
via
the Volunteer Manager
0845 3
[email protected] or call
f.org.
w.lg
ww
visit
ely,
nativ
Alter
30.
30 30
ning/run
uk/Take-Action/get-involved
on.
mati
infor
ral
gene
for-the-lgf-/ for more
LET’S
TALK!
Are you an experienced
counsellor looking to gain
experience with a wide
variety of LGB&T clients in the
Manchester area? The LGF has
a team of volunteer counselling.
In this issue of ONW, we talk to
Ben Amponsah, who shares his
volunteer experience with us.
Why have you chosen to volunteer
with the LGF? I chose to volunteer with the LGF many
years ago (2002) because at the time
I was involved with the organisation for
some health promotion and wanted to give
something back to the community. When I
started my counselling course I thought that
volunteering as a counsellor was a natural
progression. What do you like most about your
volunteer role?
It is getting LGBT clients of all ages and
backgrounds back on their feet when they
are stuck or in trouble emotionally. Seeing
the difference that counselling makes to
them is a powerful thing indeed particularly
when many come with suicidal feelings
and by the end you can see how much
progress they have made. I do believe that
the word ‘fulfilling’ was pretty much made
for this job
What has made you continue to
want to volunteer with us?
Well I qualified many years ago but I can’t
really imagine not doing some ‘pro bono’
work with the LGF. Since I started it has
been most pleasing to see the evolution of
the Counselling Service. It is now a highly
well organised and structured service
that counselling courses across the region
endeavour to send their students to. I love
the mix of therapists as well-again of all
ages and backgrounds...and all sexualities.
I have previously also been the Chair of the
GET INVOLVED!
SCAN
FOR MORE
INFORMATION
For all the
different ways you
can get involved
and support The
LGF, scan the QR
code above or visit
www.lgf.org.uk/
fundraise
We talk to Ben Amponsah, a volunteer Face 2 Face
counsellor at The LGF. And look at how you can get involved.
Board at the LGF so I am heavily invested in
the charity and for that reason I will always
volunteer my time for as long as they
continue to want me.
How do you think this experience has
affected you as an individual?
It has shown me the power of charity first
and foremost and all that can be achieved
when a dedicated group of people get
together with an idea to help people. This
has in turn coloured my thinking re future
career paths and is why, many years
later I find myself working as a full time
psychotherapist.
What would you say to someone who
is interested in becoming a volunteer
with the LGF?
I often encourage people to volunteer
for the LGF. I always say to them it’s
an amazingly warm and welcoming
environment and you can really make a
difference.
Are you a qualified Counsellor looking to
gain experience with a wide variety of
LGB&T clients in the Manchester Area?
Then come and join our multidisciplinary
team of volunteer Counsellors,
Psychotherapists, Counselling
Psychologists, Telephone Counsellors,
Creative Therapists and Relationship
Counsellors. Opportunities to expand and
enrich your skills working with a diverse
group of LGB&T clients bringing a wide
variety of complex issues. Benefits include
city centre location, daytime and evening
appointments, contributions towards
supervision costs and travel expenses,
peer support and supervision meetings,
excellent package of personal development
opportunities, support from Mental Health
Coordinator and Volunteer Manager.
For more info contact Charlotte
Cooke on 0161 235 80 35
[email protected]
www.lgf.org.uk OUTNORTHWEST 37
To find out more about leaving a legacy to The Lesbian & Gay
Foundation, call 0845 3 30 30 30, or e-mail [email protected]

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