The voice of LGBT members of the PCS Union

National LGBT Survey

Proud’s National Committee welcomes the launch of the Government Equalities Office National LGBT survey.

We recognise and celebrate the many legal advances that have been achieved over the past 50 years following the partial decriminalisation of male homosexuality in England and Wales. However we are also acutely aware, from feedback from members and many of the stories reported in the press, that many instances of LGBT based hate and discrimination continue to exist today.

Proud believes that the Government’s National LGBT survey offers an excellent opportunity to help shape the future of the LGBT rights movement and encourages all Proud members to consider taking part and making their voices heard through the survey.

Proud Chair, Richard Jones, commented “It is vitally important that we ensure that we are represented and our voice is recorded. Within days of the survey opening, there have already been moves within far right organisations to attack and undermine our legitimate and proper representation in the UK. July 2017 saw fifty years of the first steps towards equality with the partial decriminalisation of love between two men. We still have so far to go before we have full equality and the responses you can make in this survey will show how we can move closer to equality as citizens.

The survey, which should take no more than ten minutes to complete, can be accessed by clicking here.

Continue Reading

Proud honours the victims of the 2016 Pulse Massacre

Let Love Win - Orlando 49

The massacre at the Pulse nightclub that took the lives of 49 people and injured 53 more within the LGBT Community (or allies of the LGBT Community) shook the world to the core.

PCS Proud honours the victims and seeks to strengthen our resolve to fight for Equality for All.

Below is a video filmed by 49 celebrities, for the Human Rights Campaign in the USA, honouring the memory of the 49 victims.

Remember – Love wins.

Proud Orlando 1

Continue Reading

Importance of voting today

For years, public sector workers have had to put up with brutal cuts to pay. In real terms, pay cuts have detrimentally impacted our members’ lives.

PCS (and therefore Proud) is not affiliated to a political party. As such we won’t tell you who to vote for. 

We will say this:

You have a clear choice today. A future that will see pay bargaining at the centre, improved trade union legislation, and much more. A more equal society. 

Or

A future that involves more cuts to services, the vulnerable being forced to live in abject poverty whilst millionaires get tax cuts. 

However you vote today, make it count.

Your life, your future, your vote. 

Continue Reading

International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia

On the 17th May the world observes the annual International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia (IDAHOBiT), a day that reflects on the continuing oppression and persecution of the global LGBT community and to call for action to tackle the issues faced by the community.

Around the world today there are more than 70 countries that continue to enforce laws that criminalise citizens on the basis of their sexual orientation and/or gender identity with penalties including prison and even execution.

In the past few months there have also been troubling reports emanating from Chechnya of men considered to be gay, this likely also includes those identifying as bisexual, being rounded up by local police and being arrested, beaten and in some cases murdered. It has also been reported that concentration camp style areas have been established where these men are being detained.

For the LGBT community here in the UK the situation is thankfully much better, however for all that some within the community think equality has been achieved the fact is that for many it has not.

While legal equality has come on leaps and bounds over the past 50 years following the decriminalisation of male homosexuality in England and Wales in 1967, there continues to be a number of issues, in particular for the UK transgender community.

At the same time many of the rights enjoyed by today’s LGBT community came about thanks to the European Court of Human Rights and, however unlikely, Brexit and the possible introduction of a British Bill of Human Rights means we must remain vigilant against the possible dilution or removal of existing equality legislation.

On a more day to day level, LGBT discrimination and hate continue to be an ever present danger to many in the community. Last year saw a reported 147% increase in LGBT hate crime in the three months following the EU Referendum, this at a time of huge cuts to police budgets as well as the well documented cuts experienced by PCS members at the Equality and Human Rights Commission which will make it increasingly more difficult for victims to gain access to justice if they are the victim of a hate crime.

Proud, who represent LGBT members within PCS, urges all PCS members to continue to stand with LGBT colleagues and to challenge prejudice and hate wherever they witness it. Our National Committee work closely with our NEC to ensure that the voices of LGBT members are heard as part of our own Union’s ongoing work as well as representing PCS within the TUC and its regional structures across the wider Trade Union movement.

And as we look ahead towards June 8th and the General Election it is vital that we continue to put equality at the heart of everything we do as a Union and secure guarantees from all potential candidates that they will not only ensure that existing equality protections remain but that they will fight to build on this to work towards creating a truly equal society here in the UK as well as challenging inequality and discrimination, wherever it may be, around the world.

– Proud represents LGBT members within PCS, membership is open to all regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity.

You can find more information on Proud by emailing proud@pcs.org.uk, all contact is treated in the strictest confidence.

Our Bi Members Rep, Eddy Nixon, has also written for PCS as part of this year’s IDAHOBiT. You can read his article here.

Continue Reading

Commonwealth day

Commonwealth day. This year’s theme is for a peace building Commonwealth. Sounds good doesn’t it? 

No… just no.

The commonwealth was built on imperialism and colonialism. A system that oppressed people.

For LGBT people there can’t be peace when 39 Commonwealth countries still have anti-LGBT laws, first enacted by the British. The list is as follows.

Africa

Botswana

Cameroon

Ghana

Kenya

Malawi (enforcement of law suspended)

Namibia

Nigeria

Seychelles. Seychelles does not prosecute anyone under their anti-sodomy law, has promised to repeal it, but has not yet done so. A same-sex wedding was conducted in Seychelles on June 13, 2015, on British territory (the British high commissioner’s residence). Seychelles laws currently have no provision for marriage equality.

Sierra Leone

Swaziland

Tanzania

Uganda

Zambia

Lesotho was formerly on the list, but it has adopted a new Penal Code that apparently eliminates the nation’s former common-law crime of sodomy.

Asia

Bangladesh

Brunei

India

Malaysia

Maldives

Pakistan

Singapore

Sri Lanka

Americas

Antigua & Barbuda

Barbados

Belize

Dominica (But see “Dominica leader: No enforcement of anti-gay law.”)

Grenada

Guyana

Jamaica

St Kitts & Nevis

St Lucia

St Vincent & the Grenadines

Trinidad & Tobago

Oceania

Kirbati

Nauru

Papua New Guinea

Samoa

Solomon Islands

Tonga

Tuvalu

There can’t be peace when people can be jailed or killed….

Continue Reading

Your Proud National Committee 2017/2018

The below people are serving on the National Committee for 2017/2018.

Where there are vacant posts, the Chair of the National Committee will seek to fill these in the most suitable way possible. If you are interested in becoming involved in the national committee please contact Membership Organiser – Steve Griffiths on Steve.Griffiths2017@outlook.com

Your 2017/2018 National Committee

cropped-Proud-Logo.jpg

Chair Richard Jones Proud@pcs.org.uk
Secretary Eddy Nixon Proud@pcs.org.uk
Treasurer Dean Fisher Dean.Fisher@dwp.gsi.gov.uk
Organiser (Membership and Admin) Steve Griffiths Steve.Griffiths2017@outlook.com
Organiser (Learning and Regional/Devolved Nations) Kris Hendry khendrypcs@gmail.com
Organiser (Campaigns and Comms) VACANT  
Women’s Rep Vacant
Trans Member’s Rep Lyra Dunseith lyra.dunseith@bis.gsi.gov.uk
Black Member’s Rep Vacant
Disabled Member’s Rep Tony Moore Email to be added soon
Bisexual Member’s Rep Eddy Nixon Proud@pcs.org.uk
Young Member’s Rep Dean Davidson Dean.Davidson@hmrc.gsi.gov.uk
Wales Reps Mark Robinson and Dorion Griffiths doriongriffiths@gmail.com

Mark.Robinson@deca.mod.uk

Northern Ireland Reps David Halliday and Gareth Lee

Caretaking the role temporarily

Proud@pcs.org.uk
Scotland Rep Kris Hendry KHendrypcs@gmail.com
Northern Eddy Nixon Proud@pcs.org.uk
North West David Greenall David.Greenall@Dwp.gsi.gov.uk
Yorkshire and Humberside Vacant
Midlands Dean Davidson Dean.Davidson@hmrc.gsi.gov.uk
London and South East Paul Gibson Pcsproudlse@gmail.com
South West Vacant Proud@pcs.org.uk
Eastern Counties Vacant Proud@pcs.org.uk
Continue Reading

LGBT History Month – Blog #4

As part of LGBT History Month our Learning and Regional Organiser, Kris Hendry, will be writing about LGBT history and reflecting on the next steps for LGBT equality in PCS.

You can read his previous blog here.

Proud Future?

Each year LGBT History Month offers an opportunity to reflect on the achievements and progress the LGBT community has made over the years but also to reflect on the battles still to be won. So as we mark the end of this year’s History Month I’m going to look at just some of the inequalities still to be tackled and how you can play your part.

Over the past decade or so we’ve seen the introduction of civil partnership and later same sex marriage, providing legal recognition for same sex couples. Many referring to the latter as “equal marriage” but the fact is it was and to this day is not equal.

By law employers are only required to pay same sex survivor pensions on contributions from 2005 onwards, the year Civil Partnerships came into being. While some employers backdate to 1988 as they would for opposite sex couples, this is discretionary and can mean contributions by LGBT workers will not be paid in full to their surviving partner leaving many older LGBT people struggling in later life.

In education, the teaching of LGBT issues remains inconsistent at best despite the final repeal of Section 28 in 2003 across England, Wales and Northern Ireland – Scotland did so in 2000. Many young LGBT people still experience discrimination and bullying on their way through our education system, leading to higher rates of mental health related issues, self harm and even suicide among young LGBT people.

As a Trade Union these issues should concern all of us as the youth of today are the workers of tomorrow and adequate training on equality issues at a young age will help prepare young people for life after school, protect their wellbeing as well as helping tackle much of the negative attitudes we experience in workplaces and communities today.

Even protection from discrimination is not assured for all LGBT people, despite the Equality Act. Last year the Westminster Parliament’s Women and Equalities Committee produced a report with over 30 recommendations the Westminster Government should undertake to help improve equality for the Transgender community, something they are yet to do.

More generally we must all stand up against the rise in LGBT related hate crime reported over the past year, but not only that but the rise in all other forms of hate that have been seen since the EU Referendum and the election of President Trump.

After all many who identify as LGBT will experience multiple discrimination as they may also be black, or disabled, or female or any combination therein as well as of varying ages which can bring its own issues. For those who intersect equality strands we cannot discount one characteristic in favour of another and we must stand against ALL forms of hate and discrimination.

So what can you do?

Well I’m of course going to say join Proud (and PCS if you’re not already a member) and get involved. Proud members set the agenda for our National Committee through our Annual General Meeting which this year is taking place on Saturday 4th March in Birmingham. You could also stand for the Proud National Committee with various roles available for those interested, including equality and regional based roles.

With this also being AGM season, why not submit a motion? If there’s an issue you want PCS as a Union to take action on then submit a motion through your Branch to go to Annual Conference for debate. In addition, make sure to check out the Conference agenda once it is published, attend your Branch mandating meeting and make sure your delegates will be representing you at Conference.

As I mentioned at the beginning of the month, Conference has previously debated and successfully carried a range of motions in relation to LGBT and all areas of equality and that is only through the action of PCS members raising such motions in the first place.

If you are interested in getting more involved but have any questions then please feel free contact Proud and we will be happy to discuss more with you. Our email address is proud@pcs.org.uk and all contact will be treated in the strictest confidence.

Thank you to everyone who has supported Proud, PCS’ LGBT members and the wider LGBT community this History Month, we appreciate your continued support and look forward to continuing to work together as we look to the future. Solidarity.

Continue Reading

LGBT History Month – Blog #3

As part of LGBT History Month our Learning and Regional Organiser, Kris Hendry, will be writing about LGBT history and reflecting on the next steps for LGBT equality in PCS.

You can read his previous blog here.

Proud Allies

In my first blog for LGBT History Month I reflected a little on my experiences since getting involved in trade unionism and learning of the importance of solidarity and allies. And it is this aspect that I wanted to focus on this week as without the support of allies to the LGBT community it is doubtful we would have achieved the progress that we have so far for LGBT equality.

The partial decriminalisation of homosexuality itself, which took place 50 years ago, was originally introduced in the Commons by an MP who lost their seat before reform was passed. In his absence the case for reform was taken up by Labour MP Leo Abse.

Leo, who was married, cited his professional experience (a solicitor who witnessed gay/bi men being blackmailed due to their orientation) as well as personal connections (his wife was an artist so he socialised with LGBT individuals) as the reason behind his support for and ultimately achieving decriminalisation across England and Wales(It would take over a decade for Scotland and then Northern Ireland to follow suit).

In 1994, three years before Labour and the introduction of many of the LGBT friendly policies we take for granted today, the age of consent for same sex couples sat at 21 despite being 16 for those of opposite sexes.

An amendment was put forward to have this equalised and although unsuccessful, it was at least able to achieve a part reduction to 18, saving many young individuals from a criminal record until full equalisation took place in 2001. The proposer of the amendment? Married, mother of two and Conservative MP, Edwina Currie who as a Jewish, Scouse woman said “I knew enough about discrimination and could never see the justification for it.”

Of course a few years before, the seeds of solidarity had been sown between the LGBT and Trade Union movements through the support of LGSM for miners who were on strike at the time. This support built bridges between two communities that, although different, recognised that they had a common enemy and cause.

I’m sure everyone is familiar with the story of LGSM (do check out the film Pride if you haven’t already!) but it’s important we remember it as their act of unity ultimately led to the Miners Union using their power to commit the Labour Party to supporting LGBT equality and without it then who knows where we could have been today.

I’ve touched above on a few of the more major examples of allies and their impact on LGBT history and equality but the fact is there are countless allies in our history whose support is no less monumental.

Coming out was, and still is, a terrifying thought and experience for many and just acknowledging and supporting someone, whether it be a family member, a friend or colleague, coming out as LGBT can mean more than anything to that individual. Creating an environment that is supportive of LGBT equality and challenges inappropriate behaviours can have huge benefits to the health and wellbeing of LGBT individuals, whether they are out or not.

There remains much still to be achieved for LGBT equality and it’s still as important as ever that PCS’ LGBT members and our allies stand together as we continue the fight to achieve true equality.

Proud offers both Full Membership for LGBT members of our Union as well as Associate Membership for those who do not identify as LGBT but wish to stand in solidarity with our LGBT members and the wider community.

You can join today, just select the ‘Join Proud” option at the top of this page and sign up to support Proud and stand against LGBT inequality and hate this LGBT History Month.

Continue Reading

LGBT History Month – Blog #2

As part of LGBT History Month our Learning and Regional Organiser, Kris Hendry, will be writing about LGBT history and reflecting on the next steps for LGBT equality in PCS.

You can read his previous blog here.

Proud Hearts

‘People with homosexual tendencies deserve to be treated with the same degree of sympathy and understanding as anyone else with personality or sexual problems… The labour movement would best serve the interests of its homosexual members by providing counselling and the appropriate psychiatric help.’

For this week’s LGBT History Month blog, and in recognition of Heart Unions week, I thought I would reflect on a little bit of history for LGBT equality within PCS, a show of solidarity that helped to set the path to where we are today.

For many years homosexuality was seen as a mental disorder however this theory, thankfully, began to change in the 1970s. You may be surprised then that the quote above in fact comes from the December 1989 letters page of the Inland Revenue Staff Federation Assessment, the IRSF one of PCS’ predecessor Unions.

Back then Thatcher’s Section 28, banning the ‘promotion’ of homosexuality and condemning many LGBT people to lives of misery and despair, had recently been introduced. Fear and mistrust of LGBT people was spread by the mainstream media, portraying us as perverts intent on corrupting society.

So was this the reason for the letter? No. It was in fact an act of solidarity from the IRSF. The previous month’s newsletter reported the Executive Committee decision to remove Scarborough as a potential location for their Annual Conference as the local council had banned any use of their facilities by the Federation Lesbian and Gay Group.

It would be a decision which helped set some of the first steps to what has today become PCS Proud. In September 1990 FLAGG relaunched with a formal action plan to organise and campaign for lesbian and gay members, supported by the National Union. One of their key issues became the prevention of discrimination based on sexual orientation, a major risk at the time as legislation to ban the practice did not come into effect until 2003 meaning they were putting their own livelihoods at risk as well.

By the mid 90’s the merger of the IRSF and National Union of Civil and Public Servants was underway with FLAGG and NUCPS members agreeing on the formation of the new Public Services, Tax and Commerce Union group – PTC Proud, eventually becoming PCS Proud in 1998 following the further merger of PTC and CPSA, that would campaign on behalf of all LGBT members.

Since its formation Proud, our members and allies have continued the tradition of organising and campaigning set out by those who went before us. Our National Committee have organised activities such as the launch of the Proud Charter which has been used during elections to push candidates to pledge their support to LGBT equality.

We’ve also had international success with campaigns such as the #IAmGay campaign, launched in response to LGBT phobia in Russia which reached millions through social media and even drew a response from the Russian Kremlin.

Within PCS there has also been a lot of progress for LGBT equality. Annual Conference has debated and successfully carried motions on a range of issues including supporting same sex marriage, ensuring appropriate support for LGBT victims of domestic violence, austerity and its impact on LGBT homelessness as well as the creation and rollout of trans awareness training, the first of its kind among the Trade Union movement.

Indeed we have seen many great advances for LGBT equality since that letter was published in 1989, yet the fact remains many LGBT people today still face similar attitudes. It may be in their workplace, at home or on the street.

That show of solidarity the IRSF showed in 1989 remains just as important today as it did back then so why not get involved?

Join PCS and Proud and help to support the fight for equality, not just for the LGBT community but for all, so that one day everyone is able to be themselves without having to face discrimination and hate just for being who they are.

*Parts of this piece have previously appeared in OR&CLE, the R&C Group magazine. I’d like to record my thanks to David Eales who carried out the initial research on this subject*

Continue Reading

Proud’s response to redundancies at EHRC

Following today’s announcement of compulsory redundancies for staff based in the Equality and Human Rights Commission which will take effect from tomorrow, Proud’s Chair Dorion Griffiths has released the following statement on behalf of Proud and in support of PCS, and Unite, members affected by today’s announcement.

“In utterly appalling fashion, EHRC have allowed staff with protected characteristics under equality law to be discriminated against, primarily black and disabled workers suffering the brunt of cuts when directors pay rises continue to happen.

Today, while PCS and Unite members were on strike, a letter of termination was sent to 10 staff members on the grounds of redundancy. Whilst pay in lieu of notice is being given, opportunity for redeployment in the public sector or Civil Service is not an option.

When members of an organisation that champions equality are themselves discriminated against, action needs to be taken.

For every LGBT person who has had support from EHRC, sought advice from EHRC or used EHRC guidance and information, know this – Proud is fundamentally opposed to cuts to the commission and we will seek to support our EHRC comrades in any way we can.

We echo the calls of our comrades and stand in solidarity with you. Also we encourage all members to donate to the hardship funds which can be found on www.pcs.org.uk

Protests will be taking place outside EHRC offices in London, Birmingham, Manchester, Glasgow and Cardiff at 12pm tomorrow (10th February), Proud urges all members to attend their nearest protest and to show their support and solidarity with PCS members in the EHRC.

Continue Reading

World AIDS Day

“Today is World AIDS day. HIV and AIDS are not just a ‘gay disease’ but can impact many people regardless of sexual orientation. Whether it is passed on from needles, unprotected sex, passed on in the womb, it can really devastate lives.

This is why we need to remember those who have lost their battles and continue to raise awareness and press Government for more research into cures and effective treatments”. – Dorion Griffiths – Chair of PCS PROUD.

Go to www.worldaidsday.org for more information.

The TUC has published guidance on tackling HIV discrimination at work which can be found at https://www.tuc.org.uk/equality-issues/international-issues/international-development/hiv-and-aids/tackling-hiv

Continue Reading

Trans Day of Remembrance

Trans flag 

Trigger warnings – causes of death have been mentioned in this article.

I want to start this post by paying respects to those who have been killed because of their gender identity.   It would have been crude to simply put the details in table or use statistics. The rest of this article continues at the end of this list.

Brazil

J.W. da Silva (24 years old)
Cause of death: stoned to death.
Location of death: Paudalho, Brazil
Date of death: October 27th, 2016

Julia Sofia (20 years old)
Cause of death: stabbed to death.
Location of death: Nazaré, Bahia, Brazil
Date of death: October 21st, 2016

Yasmin Montoy (20 years old)

Cause of death: beaten to death, blunt force trauma to the head.
Location of death: São Paulo, Brazil
Date of death: October 16th, 2016

Unidentified Woman
Cause of death: suffucation
Location of death: Sorocaba, Brazil
Date of death: October 13th, 2016

W. R. Alexandre
Cause of death: beaten to death.
Location of death: Baixada Fluminense, Brazil
Date of death: October 8th, 2016

Unidentified Woman
Cause of death: stabbed to death
Location of death: Aracaju, Sergipe, Brazil
Date of death: September 30th, 2016

Rafael Silva (17 year old)
Cause of death: 17 gunshots, ran over by car.
Location of death: Porto Alegre, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil
Date of death: September 30th, 2016

Chaiene da Silva
Cause of death: multiple gunshot wounds
Location of death: Paudalho, Pernambuco, Brazil
Date of death: September 24th, 2016

Larissa (31 years old)
Cause of death: shot in abdomen, thrown from car
Location of death: São Paulo, Brazil
Date of death: September 16th, 2016
H.J. Silva  (37 years old)
Cause of death: blunt force trauma
Location of death: Sítio do Quinto, Bahia, Brazil
Date of death: September 11th, 2016

Pâmela Pereira  (16 years old)
Cause of death: multiple gunshot wounds
Location of death: Conceição do Jacuípe, Bahia, Brazil
Date of death: September 9th, 2016

Unidentified Woman (24 years old)
Cause of death: gunshot and stab wounds
Location of death: Caxias do Sul, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil
Date of death: September 9th, 2016

Taina W.P. Alencar (22 years old)
Cause of death: stab wound
Location of death: Londrina, Paraná, Brazil
Date of death: September 4th, 2016

Hilda A.J. da Silva (46 years old)

Cause of death: strangled with an electrical cord
Location of death: Aliança, Pernambuco, Brazil
Date of death: September 4th, 2016

Bruniele
Cause of death: multiple gunshot wounds
Location of death: São Bernardo do Campo, São Paulo, Brazil
Date of death: August 29th, 2016

Erika W.P. de Arruda (30 years old)
Cause of death: gunshot wounds to neck and groin
Location of death: Cuiabá, Mato Grosso, Brazil
Date of death: August 25th, 2016

Brenda
Cause of death: stabbing
Location of death: Castanhal, Pará, Brazil
Date of death: August 19th, 2016

Tiffany Rodrigues (23 years old)
Cause of death: asphyxiation
Location of death: Alta Floresta, Mato Grosso, Brazil
Date of death: August 8th, 2016

Unidentified Woman
Cause of death: stabbing
Location of death: Londrina, Paraná, Brazil
Date of death: August 1st, 2016

Thiemy Oliveira (24 years old)
Cause of death: stabbing
Location of death: Maringá, Paraná, Brazil
Date of death: August 1st, 2016

Adriane Bonek (43 years old)
Cause of death: unknown
Location of death: São Pedro da Aldeia, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Date of death: August 1st, 2016

Sabrina E.S. Sales (25 years old)
Cause of death: beaten to death
Location of death: Luís Eduardo Magalhães, Bahia, Brazil
Date of death: July 25th, 2016

Unidentified Woman
Cause of death: stabbing
Location of death: João Pessoa, Paraíba, Brazil
Date of death: July 13th, 2016

Edymara M. Leão (36 years old)
Cause of death: asphyxiation
Location of death: Lago Norte, Brazil
Date of death: July 11th, 2016

Nickolle Rocha (19 years old)

Cause of death: beaten to death
Location of death: Cachoeira do Sul, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil
Date of death: July 11th, 2016

Pandora Pereira (26 years old)
Cause of death: stabbed to death
Location of death: São Sebastião, São Paulo, Brazil
Date of death: July 3rd, 2016
Daiane Brasil (36 years old)
Cause of death: gunshots to the neck, chest, and face.
Location of death: Uberaba, Minas Gerais, Brazil
Date of death: June 27th, 2016

Julia Almeida (28 years old)
Cause of death: strangled, thrown in sugar cane field.
Location of death: Ituverava, São Paulo, Brazil
Date of death: June 25th, 2016

Danielly Barby (24 years old)
Cause of death: gunshot to the neck
Location of death: Mogi das Cruzes, São Paulo, Brazil
Date of death: June 25th, 2016

Sheila Santos
Cause of death: gunshot
Location of death: Calabar, Bahia, Brazil
Date of death: June 24th, 2016

Lorran Lorang (19 years old)
Cause of death: asphyxiation
Location of death: Duque de Caxias,  Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Date of death: June 22nd, 2016

Unidentified Woman
Cause of death: beaten to death with a wooden club
Location of death: Manaus, Amazonas, Brazil
Date of death: June 18th, 2016

Gabriel Figueira de Lima (21 years old)
Cause of death: stabbed in the neck
Location of death: Manaus, Amazonas, Brazil
Date of death: June 16th, 2016

Paula
Cause of death: beaten to death
Location of death: Goiandira, Goiás, Brazil
Date of death: June 16th, 2016

Lauandersa
Cause of death: stabbed over 30 times
Location of death: Genipabu, Caucaia, Brazil
Date of death: May 16th, 2016

Ana Hickmann  (30 years old)
Cause of death: 2 gunshots in the neck
Location of death: Rio Branco, Acre, Brazil
Date of death: May 15th, 2016

Michele de Souza (22 years old)
Cause of death: 7 gunshots to the chest, abdomen, legs and arms.
Location of death: São José do Rio Preto, São Paulo, Brazil
Date of death: May 11th, 2016
Leticia Silva (22 years old)
Cause of death: multiple gunshot wounds.
Location of death: Belém, Pará, Brazil
Date of death: May 5th, 2016

Alana da Silva Pessoa (22 years old)
Cause of death: gunshot wound.
Location of death: João Pessoa, Paraíba, Brazil
Date of death: May 4th, 2016

Jéssica L.C. Menezes (24 years old)
Cause of death: multiple stab wounds
Location of death: Uberlândia, Minas Gerais, Brazil
Date of death: April 16th, 2016

Luana Biersack (14 years old)
Cause of death: sexually assaulted, beaten, and drowned..
Location of death: Novo Itacolomi, Paraná, Brazil
Date of death: April 13th, 2016

Amanda Araujo  (17 years old)
Cause of death: multiple stab wounds
Location of death: Imperatriz, Maranhão, Brazil
Date of death: April 11th, 2016

Bianca Abravanel (25 years old)
Cause of death: 15 gunshot wounds to the chest and face.
Location of death:Ribeirão Preto, São Paulo, Brazil
Date of death: April 11th, 2016

Andinho
Cause of death: multiple gunshot wounds.
Location of death: Aracaju, Sergipe, Brazil
Date of death: March 29th, 2016

Gabriela Rodrigues
Cause of death: multiple gunshot wounds.
Location of death: Aparecida de Goiânia, Goiás, Brazil
Date of death: March 28th, 2016

Keyti (42 years old)
Cause of death: beaten to death.
Location of death: Imperatriz, Maranhão, Brazil
Date of death: March 27th, 2016

D.S. Barros (21 years old)
Cause of death: 30 stab wounds

Location of death: Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais, Brazil
Date of death: March 23th, 2016

Moreira  (16 years old)
Cause of death: head trauma
Location of death: Sinop, Mato Grosso, Brazil
Date of death: March 20th, 2016

Camilla Rios  (32 years old)
Cause of death: 30 stab wounds over entire body
Location of death: Jacarepagua, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Date of death: March 14th, 2016

Unidentified Woman
Cause of death: unknown, dismembered
Location of death: Brazil
Date of death: March 10th, 2016

Mika  P. Da Silva
Cause of death: gunshot wounds to the head and groin
Location of death:Macau, Rio Grande do Norte, Brazil
Date of death: March 7th, 2016

María la del Barrio
Cause of death: unknown
Location of death: Manaus, Brazil
Date of death: March 6th, 2016

V.
Cause of death: multiple stab wounds to the neck
Location of death: João Pessoa, Brazil
Date of death: March 7th, 2016

Unidentified Woman
Cause of death: multiple gunshot wounds
Location of death: Gravatai, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil
Date of death: February 27th, 2016

Natascha (37 years old)
Cause of death: set on fire.
Location of death: Tarumã, São Paulo, Brazil
Date of death: February 24th, 2016

Unidentified Woman
Cause of death: strangled, partially burned
Location of death: Porto Alegre, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil
Date of death: February 19th, 2016

Unidentified Woman
Cause of death: strangled, partially burned
Location of death: Porto Alegre, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil
Date of death: February 19th, 2016

Unidentified Woman
Cause of death: gunshot
Location of death: Carapicuiba, São Paulo, Brazil
Date of death: February 12th, 2016

Malu (30 years old)
Cause of death: unknown
Location of death: Maracanaú, Ceará, Brazil
Date of death: March 11th, 201

Fabiane Hilario (20 years old)

Cause of death: Gunshot at point blank range to the head.
Location of death: Curitiba, Paraná, Brazil
Date of death: January 27th, 2016

Dani (20 years old)
Cause of death: Gunshot to the chest
Location of death: São José do Rio Preto, São Paulo, Brazil
Date of death: January 24th, 2016
Bruna Souza (23 years old)
Cause of death: multiple stab wounds
Location of death: Rio Verde, Goiás, Brazil
Date of death: January 23rd, 2016

Ketelen Alves (23 years old)
Cause of death: gunshots
Location of death: Manaus, Brazil
Date of death: January 23rd, 2016

Giovana Atanazio (20 years old)
Cause of death: Thrown from a bridge, drowned
Location of death: São José dos Campos, Brazil
Date of death: January 17th, 2016

Unidentified Woman
Cause of death: multiple gunshots
Location of death: Fortaleza, Ceará, Brazil
Date of death: January 4th, 2016

Italy
Thiago Fernando Batista (30 years old)
Cause of death: unknown, body thrown in dumpster.
Location of death: Rome, Italy
Date of death: July 29th, 2016

Mexico
Paulett Gonzalez (24 years old)
Cause of death: murdered, burned beyond recognition.
Location of death: Celaya, Guanajuato, Mexico
Date of death: June 2016

Pakistan
Alisha (23 years old)
Cause of death: multiple gunshot wounds.
Location of death: Parda Bagh, Faqirbabad, Pakistan
Date of death: May 25th, 2016
Russia
Raina Aliev (25 years old)

Cause of death: dismembered
Location of death: Dagestan
Date of death: October 201

Spain
Lorena Reyes (32 years old)
Cause of death: fall, after being stabbed
Location of death: Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Spain
Date of death: October 24th, 2016

Thailand
Amphon Kongsong (28 years old)
Cause of death: strangled, body stuffed in bed frame.
Location of death: Pattaya, Thailand
Date of death: August 20th, 2016

Turkey
Hande Kader (24 years old)
Cause of death: murdered, burned beyond recognition.
Location of death: Istanbul, Turkey
Date of death: August 2016

USA
Monica Loera (43 years old)
Cause of death: gunshot
Location of death: Austin, Texas, USA
Date of death: January 22nd, 2016

Jasmine Sierra (52 years old)
Cause of death: beaten to death
Location of death: Bakersfield, California, USA
Date of death: January 22nd, 2016

Maya Young (25 years old)
Cause of death: stabbing
Location of death: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA
Date of death: February 20th, 2016

Kendarie/Kandicee Johnson (16 years old)
Cause of death: Gunshot
Location of death: Burlington, Iowa
Date of death: March 2nd, 2016

Keyonna Blakeney (22 years old)
Cause of death: upper body trauma
Location of death: Rockville, Maryland, USA
Date of death: May 1st, 2016

Tyreece  “Reecey” Walker (32 years old)
Cause of death: multiple stab wounds
Location of death: Wichita, Kansas, USA
Date of death: May 1st, 2016

Mercedes Successful (32 years old)
Cause of death: gunshot
Location of death: Haines City, Florida, USA
Date of death: May 15th, 2016

Amos Beede (38 years old)
Cause of death: beaten to death
Location of death: Burlington, Vermont
Date of death: May 22nd, 2016

Devin Diamond  (22 years old)
Cause of death: blunt force trauma, set on fire
Location of death: New Orleans, Louisiana
Date of death: June 5th, 2016

Deeniquia Dodds (22 years old)
Cause of death: shot
Location of death: Washington D.C., USA
Date of death: July 4th, 2016

Dee Whigham (36 years old)
Cause of death: stabbed to death
Location of death: St. Martin, Mississippi, USA
Date of death: July 23rd, 2016

Erykah Tijerina (36 years old)

Cause of death: Stabbed 24 times
Location of death: El Paso, Texas, USA
Date of death: August 8th, 2016

Rae’lynn Thomas (28 years old)
Cause of death: Shot at point blank range
Location of death: Columbus, Ohio, USA
Date of death: August 10th, 2016

TT Saffore (26 years old)
Cause of death: Throat cut
Location of death: Chicago, Illinois, USA
Date of death: September 11th, 2016

Crystal Edmonds (32 years old)
Cause of death: Shot in back of head
Location of death: Baltimore, Maryland, USA
Date of death: March September 16th, 2015

Trans Day of Remembrance

The most disturbing thing? These are the murders that we know about. The chances are that there are more out there that we have not heard about. https://tdor.info/ has more information about Trans Day of Remembrance. The Trans Muder Monitoring project estimates that there were 2016 reported murders of trans people between 2008 and 2015.

In an industrial sense, PCS members have been treated badly in the workplace from bullying and judgmental management to misinformed colleagues that spread extreme levels of prejudice. One case that PCS Proud is aware of involves a trans member who has received threatening, anonymous letters that have contained chemicals, blades, excrement and was stabbed in the workplace with a chemically coated blade. We are currently working with the member, their branch and group to resolve the matter from a union perspective whilst a police investigation is being pursued.

 

Why is PCS Proud concerned about deaths around the world?

As a trade union, we believe in Equality, Freedom and Justice for all. Human beings should be free to live without Transphobia, Racism, Sexism, Homo/bi-phobia, Disability Discrimination and prejudice in other forms. Each of the victims here have been murdered because of their gender identity. This is very much a trade union issue.

What do we do?

We stand in unity. We stand in the face of adversity and we remain strong. You may not be a trans person but that doesn’t mean that you cannot stand with trans people and demand an end to prejudice and hatred.

As a union, an injury to one is an injury to all. Therefore, if you hear transphobia, jokes about trans people or comments about trans people that are negative/stereotypical/hateful then it is our duty to challenge it.

From my own personal perspective, I want to see a world where the entire LGBTQ community are free to be themselves without fear, without being murdered. This battle starts with each of us and education.

PCS Proud has a trans equality rep, Lyra Dunseith, who can be contacted via Proud@pcs.org.uk. You can read Lyra’s latest blog at http://www.pcs.org.uk/en/news_and_events/pcs-blogs/latest-blogs.cfm#BL011116

 

Steve Heyward

PCS Proud Equality Lead

Continue Reading

LGBT Seminar 2016

cropped-cropped-cropped-Proud.jpg

(Please scroll to the bottom of this page for the links to the seminar application forms)

The PCS LGBT Members Seminar will be held at the Novotel hotel in Birmingham on the 26-27 November 2016.

Registration will open at 12 noon on Saturday 26 November, with the seminar starting at 1.00 pm. The event will finish no later than 1.00 pm on Sunday 27 November.

The seminar will seek to encourage greater participation from LGBT members and will integrate PCS campaigning and organising priorities with the particular challenges faced by PCS LGBT members.

A variety of speakers, workshops and discussion group sessions will be spread across the weekend.

The seminar is aimed at LGBT members who are newly active or who would like to become more active in PCS. Applications are positively welcomed from black, disabled, women and young members who are often under-represented at union events.

PCS fully appreciates there may be special sensitivities linked to disability and LGBT issues, and all applications will be treated confidentially.

PCS will meet the costs of accommodation, meals, and reasonable travel, including those for carers. Access requirements will be met as far as possible.

Childcare facilities will be provided for children between the ages of 6 months and 14 years, however places are limited.

Delegates are encouraged to make alternative arrangements where possible and PCS will cover the costs of reasonable childcare claims on production of a receipt from a registered carer.

NB:  Lunch will be available to delegates on arrival from 12 Noon.

Members can nominate themselves and an application form is attached. Further copies are available on the PCS website www.pcs.org.uk under the news and events section or by contacting the Equality Department on 020 7801 2683. Alternatively you can email requests for application forms to equality@pcs.org.uk.

Applicants must submit a supporting statement detailing why they wish to attend as this information forms part of the selection criteria, and complete the Equality Data Monitoring form also.

Please also note all successful applicants are required to attend for the entire duration of the seminar.

The closing date for receipt of applications is 12 noon on Friday 28 October 2016.  Successful applicants will be notified by 4 November 2016.

 Please note that all seminar correspondence will be sent by email to the email address included on the application form unless you notify us otherwise.

 Please bring this briefing to the attention of LGBT members in your branch. Alternative formats are available.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact the Equality team on 020 7801 2683.  Alternatively you can email at equality@pcs.org.uk.

The three forms to complete can be found by clicking the following links, please send them to Equality@pcs.org.uk. 

1app-form-monitoring-data-form

1app-form-supporting-statement

5application-form

Continue Reading

Black History Month 2016

Past, Present and Future – Black History Month 2016

By Kris Hendry

[The Proud Black History Month leaflet can be downloaded here]

Held in October, Black History Month is the annual celebration of contributions that those in the black community have made to our history, society and culture. Something often overlooked in more mainstream discussions on such issues.

Proud welcomes this opportunity to reflect on the impact that those from the black community who also identified as LGBT have made to both movements in the struggle for equality. Too often these important individuals are forgotten about, or worse deliberately sidelined to be more palatable for a mainstream audience.

Such was the case with last year’s film adaptation of Stonewall which told the tale of the 1969 Stonewall riots in New York, considered the catalyst for the modern day LGBT movement.

The film used a white male character to depict the throwing of the first brick when in fact, based on the testimony of many there, the first brick was thrown by a trans person of colour. Marsha P. Johnson. Marsha, along with close friend Sylvia Rivera, co-founded the Street Transvestite Action Revolutionaries dedicated to helping homeless young trans women of colour and others. Sylvia was also a well known black transgender activist and founding member of the US Gay Liberation Front. Both continued their activism throughout the 1970s and 80s before Martha’s tragic passing in 1992.

Here in the UK we have individuals such as Waheed Alli (Baron Alli), who in July 1998 became the youngest as well as first openly gay peer in Parliament. Waheed has used his position to campaign on a range of issues in relation to LGBT equality. He helped lead the campaign to repeal the cruel and damaging Section 28, advocated for lowering the age of consent from, then, 18 to 16 in line with the age for heterosexual individuals as well as calling for the removal of religious institutions being prohibited from conducting civil partnerships before same sex marriage was even considered.

As we look ahead, the rise in race related incidents and right wing rhetoric both before and after the EU Referendum earlier this year it has never been more important that we stand together in order to confront and challenge this insidious behaviour. It is only by recognising our joint histories and intersectionality that we can truly achieve equality.

Proud will continue to do this and we invite all PCS members to join us. Membership is open to all, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity, with dedicated officers on our National Committee for other equality strands to ensure all voices are heard and that we represent all LGBT members equally.

For more information on Black History Month including events taking place across the UK, visit http://www.blackhistorymonth.org.uk/.

The Proud Black History Month leaflet can be downloaded here

Continue Reading

Cuts at the Equality Human Rights Commission

The Equality and Human Rights Commission, an organisation derided by some as the enforcer of political correctness in the UK. In truth a vital organisation which helps to hold the UK Government to account on issues surrounding equality and human rights and helps other work to improve the lives of citizens across the UK.

And it is currently under attack. Already it’s seen its budget slashed from £70m to £22m since 2010 with further cuts of 25% announced and redundancies on the way. We’re told it’s necessary under the auspices of austerity, the ideological approach of the current Tory Government which has impacted immensely on many of the UK’s minority communities. Could there be a connection one wonders?

And why should the LGBT community care? Well here’s two recent examples of their work to support LGBT equality that could disappear if the department is stripped to the bare bones by the Government.

In 2008 a gay couple were looking to book a hotel in Cornwall for some time away. At that time the couple had had a civil partnership, same sex marriage still a few years away. However they found themselves blocked from staying in the hotel they had chosen based on their sexual orientation.

The EHRC supported the couple in pursuing a discrimination claim which resulted in a successful outcome for the couple in 2013, sending a clear message that discriminating against people based on their sexual orientation is not permitted when providing goods and services in the UK.

More recently the EHRC has provided funding to the LGBT Consortium in England and Wales, as well as the Equality Network and LGBT Youth Scotland north of the border. To what end? To tackle LGBT hate crime and to improve reporting across the UK, in particular in rural communities where many in our community remain more isolated from the mainstream LGBT hubs that exist in larger city locations.

To allow these cuts in the EHRC to go ahead puts this, and all of their other, good work at risk and could lead to increases in discrimination against LGBT people with the lack of funding and resource at the EHRC coupled with tribunal fees and the removal of legal aid blocking those struggling financially from being able to pursue justice for themselves and others.

We all have to stand together and call for an end to these damaging cuts. Visit the PCS website to email your MP and call on their support for the campaign. You can do this by clicking here http://www.bit.ly/29JZaoc

Continue Reading