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Peter Tatchell: The Unfinished Battle for LGBT Rights in the UK

Tue 1 Jul 2014, 7.30pm St Georges Lecture Theatre, 17 Mappin St. S1 4DT

Sheffield Humanist Society presents human rights campaigner and distinguished supporter of Humanism, Peter Tatchell. We have moved mountains but there is still much to overcome.... Peter Tatchell believes that the battle for LGBT rights is far from over. In this lecture, he will explore areas of unfinished business, areas where battles need to be fought and won, in order to justifiably claim that the UK has secure LGBT rights.

The lecture will focus on religious exemption to anti-discriminatory laws; sex and relationship education for LGBT students; homophobic bullying in schools; restrictions on blood donation; non-recognition of sexual orientation for asylum requests; legal disparities between the countries of the UK regarding hate speech; and much more.

Peter Tatchell has been campaigning since 1967 on issues of human rights, democracy, LGBT freedom, and global justice. From the late 1970s onwards, he proposed a single, comprehensive Equal Rights Act to harmonise the uneven patchwork of equality legislation, to ensure equal treatment and non-discrimination for everyone. This proposal was eventually secured with the passage of the Equality Act 2010.

In 1994, he named 10 Anglican bishops and urged them to "Tell The Truth" about their sexuality; accusing them of homophobia and hypocrisy. The same year he was arrested for saying the Islamist extremist group Hizb ut Tahrir espoused Nazi-like views about women, LGBT and Jewish people. Four years later he interrupted the Easter Sermon of the then Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr George Carey, in protest at his opposition to gay equality.

In 1999, in London, he ambushed the motorcade of the Zimbabwean President, Robert Mugabe, attempting a citizen's arrest on charges of torture. A repeat attempt in Brussels in 2001 resulted in him being beaten unconscious by Mugabe's bodyguards. In 2009, he co-proposed a UN Global Human Rights Index, to measure and rank the human rights record of every country – with the aim of creating a human rights league table to highlight the best and worst countries and thereby incentivise governments to adhere to human rights standards and improve their ranking. He coordinated the Equal Love campaign from 2010, in a bid to overturn the UK's twin legal bans on same-sex civil marriages and opposite-sex civil partnerships – helping win same-sex marriage but, not yet, opposite-sex civil partnerships.

He is Director of the human rights organisation, the Peter Tatchell Foundation www.PeterTatchellFoundation.org

The venue is by Brook Hill Roundabout. Doors open from 7pm. Tickets £5/Unwaged £4 from https://humanism.org.uk/sheffield

www.sheffieldhumanists.org.uk

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