Change.org petition launched by 17-24-30 to raise awareness of the 15th Anniversary of the London Nail Bomb attacks and appeal to Faith Leaders, Politicians and Election Candidates to pledge their support

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We believe that it is important to actively remember the victims of hate crime, to show our support to those who have had their lives changed forever by acts of hate. We state clearly that hate crime is not acceptable in our communities and that we will work together to tackle this problem.

Fifteen years ago this April, David Copeland – the London Nail Bomber -  set out to stir up fear and hatred by targetting communities with nail bombs in the lead up to the UK’s elections in the hope that he would light a spark that would divide communities and lead to the election of the BNP. Luckily he was caught and his plan failed but not before he had planted three nail bombs – targetting Brixton, Brick Lane and Soho.

The first nail bomb was planted in Brixton on the 17th April 1999, targetting the local Black community. It exploded next to the Iceland store and injured 47 people including a young child that was sitting in a child’s buggy nearby.

The second nail bomb was targetted at the Asian communities around Brick Lane on the 24th April. It exploded next to the Sweet and Spicy Restaurant opposite Brick Lane Police station injuring 6 people including the owner of the restaurant and members of his family.

The third and final nail bomb was planted in The Admiral Duncan bar in Soho on the 30th April. It was targetted against the local gay community, exploding at 6.37pm killing three people (John Light, Nick Moore and Andrea Dykes – and her unborn child) and injuring many more.

The 17-24-30 No to Hate Crime Campaign was set up in April 2009 to mark the 10th anniversary of these attacks – to remember what happened, to show our support to those affected by these attacks, to help organise the annual April Acts of Remembrance and to encourage our communities work closely together to tackle all forms of hate crime. 17-24-30 takes it’s name from the dates of these three attacks, symbolically joining the three dates to remind our communities that violence and hate crime affects us all and that we must join together to tackle and hopefully eliminate this problem.

As we approach the 15th anniversary of these attacks, and start organising the annual April Acts of Remembrance we are calling upon all Faith Leaders, all Politicians and all potential candidates in the forthcoming elections to pledge their commitment to tackling all forms of hate crime, to stand with us, and with those affected by hate crime, to condemn all acts of violence and terrorism and to work together to prevent events like this happeninig again.

We invite everyone to mark the anniversaries of  the London Nail Bomb attacks this year by joining our pledge to keep on tackling all forms of hate crime – we can all help to make this world a safer place for all, no place for hate.

Mark Healey

Founder 17-24-30 No To Hate Crime Campaign

Click this link to go to the Petition Page! 

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April Acts of Remembrance – Appeal for Volunteers

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This April marks the 15th anniversary of the London Nail Bomb attacks when David Copeland set out to stir up fear and hatred by planting a series of nail bombs across London targeting the Black, Asian and Gay communities of Brixton, Brick Lane and Soho.

Each year 17-24-30 No to Hate Crime Campaign organise the April Acts of Remembrance to mark the anniversaries of these horrific events and provide an opportunity for people to show their support to those affected by these attacks.

In Brixton (17th April) and Brick Lane (24th April) we tend to organise a small gathering at the site of the bomb attacks, lighting three candles which represent the three communities that were attacked, talking to passers-by about what happened, and taking a moment to reflect upon what happened and how we hope to stop it happening again.

In Soho (30th April) there is a short Act of Remembrance in St Anne’s Gardens. Friends and family gather at The Admiral Duncan from 5pm onwards before walking round to the gardens about 6.10pm for a service lead by Rev Simon Buckley from St Anne’s Church. We remember the three people killed during the Soho bombing; Nick Moore, John Light and Andrea Dykes. There are usually a few speeches, a moment of silence and a song sung by a local choir.

We are currently in the process of organising this year – if you would like to come along and join us please get in touch Mark@17-24-30.org (please mention which dates your available) or sign up to our Facebook events to follow what is taking place. We need volunteers to help us steward these events.

Everyone is welcome who wants to come along.

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Vauxhall IDAHO Tree replanted in Lambeth

POSTED BY LAMBETH COUNCIL ⋅ FEBRUARY 26, 2014

MP Kate Hoey, Cllr Jack Hopkins and Lambeth Hate Crime Coordinator Mark Healey replanting Tree

MP Kate Hoey, Cllr Jack Hopkins and Lambeth Hate Crime Coordinator Mark Healey replanting Tree

Vauxhall MP Kate Hoey (left), Cllr Jack Hopkins (centre) and Mark Healey (right), Lambeth Council’s Hate Crime Coordinator, at the replanting of the IDAHO tree.

The Vauxhall IDAHO Tree marking Lambeth’s opposition to homophobic hate crimes around the world has been replanted in Lambeth.

Speakers including Vauxhall MP Kate Hoey warned of the discrimination still faced by lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people in countries like Russia, Uganda and Nigeria as they planted Chinese privet on a site at the Albert Embankment.

The tree replaced an apple blossom which was planted several years ago to mark the International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia (IDAHO), but has since died. The original tree commemorated victims of hate crimes, including David Morley (known affectionately as “Sinders” within the LGBT community) who was killed on the South Bank in 2004, and Jody Dobrowski who was killed on Clapham Common in 2005.

Vauxhall One and Vauxhall Gay Business Forum asked for the tree to be replaced during LGBT History month this month [February], and to show solidarity with Russian colleagues during the Winter Olympics in Sochi. They also wanted to draw attention to the persecution of LGBT communities taking place in Nigeria and Uganda.

Ms Hoey, who joined Cllr Jack Hopkins, Lambeth Cabinet Member for Safer and Stronger Communities, to plant the tree, said: “All of us who live in Vauxhall want to live in a society, in a neighbourhood, in a community where we all can be free from fear.

“This tree is a symbol of why it matters that we don’t condone, in any way or any shape or form, homophobia.

“It is particularly sad that this is happening in a week when a major Commonwealth country, Uganda, has just passed a law that is making homosexuality illegal.”

Mark Healey, Lambeth Council’s Hate Crime Coordinator, said almost 100 homophobic incidents had been reported to local police already this year – but the figure was only the “tip of the problem”.

He said: “A recent survey found that only one in six gay people report incidents to the police, so we could be looking at another 500-plus incidents that we are not aware of this year alone. We want to appeal to all victims of hate crime to come forward and tell us what they have experienced so we can do something about it.”

“We are replanting the tree today to reaffirm our collective commitment to tackling homophobia in Lambeth, to make Lambeth a safe place for all; no place for hate.”

The evergreen Chinese privet was donated by Alistair Johnstone, from Lambeth Parks and Open Spaces after Mark Oakley from the Vauxhall Gay Business Forum and Frances Fraser from Vauxhall One reported that the original tree had died.

Anyone who has experienced hate crime in the borough can report it via the Lambeth Council website hate crime reporting form or contact Mark Healey Lambeth’s Hate Crime Coordinator 020 7926 2796 or by email mhealey1@lambeth.gov.uk.

In an emergency always contact the Police on 999.

More pictures of this event on the Lambeth LGBT Facebook page (click here).

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Letters of support from the Prime Minister, the Deputy Prime Minister and Leader of the Opposition

Political Leaders

The Prime Minister, David Cameron, wrote:

“I strongly back this year’s Hate Crime Awareness Week which once again raises this important issue around the country.
 
Crimes motivated by hatred have no place in modern-day Britain and I know that communities all over the country are united in their condemnation of such despicable acts.
 
Hate crime manifests itself in many ways: from homophobic bullying and harassment of people with disabilities to acts of terrorism perpetrated in the name of religion and those who target entire communities in a twisted form of retribution.
 
This year I joined other politicians, public figures and ordinary people with the family of Stephen Lawrence to remember his death twenty years on. It was a stark reminder of the devastation caused by hate crime.
 
Next year is the 15th anniversary of another appalling act – that of the nail bomb attacks in London which killed three people and injured many more. These were not just attacks on the African-Caribbean, Bangladeshi and LGBT communities – they were attacks on us all.
 
While these dreadful acts happened some time ago, sadly hate crimes still take place. Therefore, it’s important that victims have the confidence to come forward either to the police or to support groups, such as the 17-24-30 organisation. And it’s just as important that police, prosecutors and courts do everything in their powers to pursue offenders and bring them to justice.
 
That’s why earlier this year I set up a task force to oversee how government is tackling extremism. This brings together key departments: education, health, home office and justice to ensure the system not only pursues and prosecutes offenders but prevents crimes happening in the first place.
 
I do believe that a lot of progress has been made over the years but we must all recognise that still more needs to be done if we are to say that the job is complete.
 
This is why raising awareness of the issue is so crucial and it is heartening to see so many people taking part in events up and down the country this week to get the message across. We will see solidarity vigils in public spaces, venues will be hosting special training and educational events, and volunteers will be distributing leaflets in our towns and cities.
 
Meanwhile, other organisations and venues will highlight the issue in a more colourful way by ‘painting the town purple’, with bright decorations and posters. The week then culminates with the International Day of Hope and Remembrance for those affected by hate crime.
 
Let us all join in remembering those who have been killed or affected by hatred and let it give us hope that crimes like these are stopped. We owe that to the memory of those who have lost their lives to hatred.”

The Deputy Prime Minister, Nick Clegg, said:

“As we mark the start of Hate Crime Awareness week, my thoughts are with all of you who have suffered as a result of these deplorable and cowardly acts against individuals and entire sections of our society.

“Your strength and unity reminds us all that hate crime must be challenged.  Hate crime is always an attack on the core values and freedoms which underpin our society. Standing together in this way is the greatest show of strength for those who suffer hate crimes, and demonstrates the greatest condemnation of those who commit them.

“This Government stands with you.”

And the Leader of the Opposition, Ed Miliband  stated:

The Act of Remembrance and Renewal provides an opportunity to remember all those affected by hate crimes. The act of lighting a candle of hope is not just about remembering; It is also positive affirmation of our collective commitment to speak up and speak out against hatred and persecution.

As we approach the fourth year since the appalling murder of Ian Baynham in Trafalgar Square, the annual events of Hate Crime Awareness Week play a vital role in bringing communities together across the country.

We have come a long way on the journey against homophobia and transphobia. I am proud of the part that Labour MPs and Peers played in securing the successful passage of equal marriage through Parliament. Britain is better because of equal marriage.

Together, we have brought equality closer, from ending Section 28 to outlawing discrimination in the workplace in the everyday provision of goods and services.

But there is still unfinished business.

For every young person scared to come out or facing bullying in the playground, we still have a job to do. For every gay couple abused in the street, we still have a hob to do. For every victim attacked for simply being who they are, we still have a job to do.

I know that Britain is better than the prejudice and hatred directed at too many lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans people. As you gather at events and vigils throughout Hate Crime Awareness Week remember those who have suffered, and be restless for change.

Together we can build a more equal and just society.”

2013 Awareness Week Logo

Comment by Mark Healey, 17-24-30 No to Hate Crime Campaign

I’m very pleased to receive these important messages of support from our Prime Minister, the Deputy Prime Minister and the Leader of the Opposition.

Four years on from the death of Ian Baynham the organisation 17-24-30 has established October as the month where we encourage people across the UK and abroad to do something to tackle hate crime in our communities. It is good to see people working together in partnership with each other, with their local police and councils, promoting and supporting local anti-hate crime initiatives.

I hope this week will inspire more people to get involved. That we can continue to build upon the National Hate Crime Awareness Week each year until there is absolutely no place for hate in any of our communities.

Once this week is over let’s start planning for next year. In April we mark the 15th anniversary of the London Nail Bomb attacks on Brixton, Brick Lane and Soho.

Hate Crime Awareness Week 2014 will take place between the 11th – 18th October 2014.

Hate Crime 2014

Join our mailing list if you want to be involved!

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St Paul’s Act of Remembrance

Mark Healey pointing to No To Hate Crime Poster displayed outside St Paul's Cathedral

Mark Healey pointing to No To Hate Crime Poster displayed outside St Paul’s Cathedral

Programme Overview:

  • Open with Piano Music
  • Welcome by Rev Michael Hampel
  • Reading from Revelations Rev Mark Oakley
  • Moment of silence whilst Jenny Baynham lights Candle of Hope and Remembrance
  • Mark Healey 17-24-30 No to Hate Crime Campaign
  • Edwin Sesange Out and Proud Diamond Group
  • London Gay Men’s Chorus – “One Day like this”
  • Rose Simkins – Stop Hate UK
  • Claire Dimyon OBE – Pride Solidarity
  • Poet Dean Atta – “To LGBT Russia with Love
  • London Gay Men’s Chorus – “Love Don’t need a reason” whilst a selection of guests light candles.
  • Final Blessing
  • Close with Piano Music

Eventrbrite: We used this service to promote the event and manage the free tickets that were available, this worked extremely well and was very simple to set up. By the close of the event 236 people had registered for tickets. We would recommend using Eventbrite again.

Volunteers and participants: arrived at the Front Entrance of St Paul’s from 5.30pm. It was good to see the London Gay Men’s Chorus gathering on the steps of St Pauls. Edwin Sesange brought a large group of people with him from the African group Out and Proud Diamond Group. We had seven volunteers but could have done with a few more to help improve access to the event.

Wheelchair Access: There is an entrance on the south side of the Cathedral (right hand side as you look at the west steps). There’s a panel opposite a door and the panel has a buzzer and someone comes and lets the person in and there’s a lift. Unfortunately  the lift was out of order this evening which caused some difficulty for those attending the service – next year we need to ensure we have more volunteers to help with access to the building.

BSL Signers: We had two volunteers signing the event positioned close to the speakers on the left hand side. Some seating was reserved for members of the deaf community so they could clearly see the BSL signers.

Speakers Points: There were two speaking points either side of the main alter. Speakers took alternate turns to speak. The Welcome given on the left followed by the Reading on the right. Silence during the lighting of the National Candle of Hope and Remembrance. Then Mark spoke on the left, Edwin on the right. Performance by London Gay Men’s Chorus followed by Rose on the left,  Clare on the right, then Dean the poet on the left. Final performance by the London Gay Men’s Chorus during which members of the audience lit more candles, followed by the Blessing on the Right. The flow all worked really well.

Candles: Four candle stands were set up in a row between the two speaker stands, with the National Candle of Hope and Remembrance in the centre. We brought the candle that we used last year back to use again this year. St Paul’s supplied the smaller candles.

Brochures: St Paul’s are printing 200 programmes for the event, traditionally these are always produced in white but for this event they were on lilac paper.

Pictures and Videos: We were able to film the whole events and hope to share these videos on YouTube as soon as they become available.

Programme:

(1)   Open with Piano Music

  • Organised by St Pauls

(2)   Welcome by Rev Cannon Michael Hampel

  • We don’t have a copy of his speech but it was recorded.

(3)   Reading from Revelations

read by

The Rev Canon Mark Oakley, Chancellor

Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth; for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. And I saw the holy city, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying,

‘See, the home of God is among mortals.

He will dwell with them; they will be his peoples,

and God himself will be with them; he will wipe every tear from their eyes.

Death will be no more; mourning and crying and pain will be no more, for the first things have passed away.’

And the one who was seated on the throne said, ‘See, I am making all things new.’ Also he said, ‘Write this, for these words are trustworthy and true.’ Then he said to me, ‘It is done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. To the thirsty I will give water as a gift from the spring of the water of life.

Those who conquer will inherit these things, and I will be their God and they will be my children.’

Revelation 21. 1-7

(4)   Jenny Baynham and friends to light National Candle of Hope and Remembrance.

Silence and lighting of candle by Jenny Baynham, sister of Ian Baynham who was homophobically attacked and beaten outside South Africa House and later died from the injuries he sustained.

(5)   1st Address Mark Healey 17-24-30 No to Hate Crime Campaign

Welcome, Welcome, Welcome

Welcome to St Pauls Cathedral

  • thank you Michael and your team for hosting us tonight,
  • thank you to the London Gay Men’s Chorus and Poet Dean Atta who are performing for us this evening, thank you to the readers, the speakers and the BSL signers.
  • thank you to our volunteers
  • and thank you to all of you in the audience for joining us.

Welcome to the launch of this year’s Hate Crime Awareness Week

  • This is our 2nd Hate Crime Awareness Week.
  • This is the 4th year since we lost Ian Baynhan.
  • This is the 5th annual gathering of Hope and Remembrance in his name.

Welcome to this historic and important launch event at St Pauls Cathedral organised by 17-24-30.

  • The Facebook group started four years ago to mark the 10th anniversary of the London Nail Bomb attacks on Brixton, Brick Lane and Soho.
  • The campaign that every year facilitates the April acts of Remembrance so that those lost and those affected by those attacks are never forgotten,
  • The organisation that has now established this annual Hate Crime Awareness Week and will be co-ordinating Solidarity Vigils and events against Hate Crime across the UK next weekend.
  • The small charity that works to bring people and communities closer together to tackle all forms of hate crime and promote the good work that so many other organisations including the Disability Hate Crime Network, Galop, Inclusion for All and Stop Hate UK are doing – organisation we are collecting for this week.

We are here tonight to remember those who have been victims of hate crime.

  • People like Andrea Dykes, Stephen Lawrence, Fiona Pilkington, and Lucy Meadows.
  • People like John Light, David Kato, Dwayne Jones and Dean Morriah.
  • People like Nick Moore, Matthew Shepherd, Harvey Milk and Ian Baynham.

Sadly there are so many victims that we cannot mention them all by name but that does not mean that they are forgotten because we are here tonight to remember them.

Tonight we will remember them by lighting candles of hope and remembrance.

  • We will remember them as the people that they were.
  • We will remember them as the people that they could have been.
  • And we will remember them as we face the challenges that lay ahead for us as we strive to make the world a better place in their names.

I am here to talk about Hate Crime

  • What is going on
  • What needs to be done
  • And how you can support our work.

So what has been going on?

  • Over the past four years we have established a regular calendar of events;We have networked with people from all kinds of backgrounds.
    • the April Acts of Remembrance,
    • the summer Pride Awareness Campaign,
    • the October Awareness Week leading up to the International Day of Hope and Remembrance for those affected by Hate Crime
    • with solidarity events taking place around the UK and occasionally abroad.
  • And we have attended numerous events and activities across London from Barnet to Westminster to promote our campaign and share the good work that others are doing as well.

So what needs to be done? In my opinion Hate Crime is slipping down the agenda so we need to start speaking out to make sure that proactive anti-hate crime initiatives are adequately resourced and supported at every level.

Here are just a few examples:

  • I recently contacted every council across London to find out who their Hate Crime Co-ordinators are. Only 18 out of 33 councils have got back to me and some of those that have responded have said that they no longer have adequate time or resources to proactively deal with hate crime. Some don’t even have Hate Crime Co-ordinators any more. That is not good enough.
  • Last year I e-mailed all the Police LGBT Liaison Officers on the Metropolitan Police website but only half of them got back to me. That is a 50% response rate. That is not good enough.
  • The Metropolitan Police Authority use to organise a pan-London Hate Crime Forum for those tackling Hate Crime but since the MPA was disbanded that forum no longer meets. That is not good enough.

How many of you have heard of the MOPAC 7 – cutting Hate Crime is not even listed as one of their core priorities! The Mayor’s mission and challenge for the Metropolitan Police is good  “to become the most effective, efficient, most respected and even most loved police force” by 2016. The 20/20/20 Challenge to cut crime by 20%, to boost public confidence by 20% and to Cut costs by 20%. It is good but it is not good enough.

I think

  • It should be the MOPAC 8 and include the challenge “to put an end to all forms of Hate Crime by 2016.”
  • There should be a pan London hate crime forum to share best practice, develop new ideas and encourage us to work closely in partnership with each other.
  • There should be Hate Crime Co-ordinators in every Council.
  • And there should be at least one part-time dedicated, active and resourced Police LGBT Liaison Officer in every borough, and at least one full-time Officer in the key boroughs across London that have the highest LGBT populations and footfall like Westminster and Lambeth.

What do we need you to do?

How many of you are aware of how the recession is impacting on local anti-hate crime work? In recent years we have seen massive cuts to the funding of local authorities, the local police and the voluntary sector.

This has meant a lot of anti-hate crime work has been put on hold as organisations simply don’t have the time or financial resources to do it.

  • For example; Some of Galop’s funding recently came to an end so they have lost staff.
  • Westminster Council recently withdrew funding for Stop Hate UK Helpline in their borough.
  • I could list other examples.

What you need to do

  • You need to check that your area has pro-active anti-hate crime initiatives in place.
  • You need to ensure that this work is adequately funded and resourced.
  • You need to help promote and support the good work that is being done.

We all need to start being a bit more proactive and creative like the EDL – I’m not talking about the English Defence League, I’m talking about the English Disco Lovers here – “One World, One Race, One Disco” a counter movement that aims to subvert hatred with humour, promoting equality, respect and the Eutopian vision of Disco!

We need to embrace the challenges that face us like the Mosque after the murder of Lee Rigby in Wandsworth who diffused a demo by the EDL by inviting them in for tea and biscuits.

One thing I know for sure – if we continue to meet threats of violence with violence then those threats will continue to escalate which is why I believe we need to really look at new ways we can bring all our communities closer together.

How many of you have tweeted about tonight? How many of you have shared our links and posted on Facebook about this week? How many of you have talked about this with your friends and neighbours?

  • You need to leave here tonight and help us spread the word about what we are doing!
  • You need to speak to your local councils, local police and local voluntary groups and see what they are doing.
  • and if they are doing nothing then you need to work with them to make sure they are on-board with us next year!

Everyone of you here tonight can help 17-24-30 and all the other organisations represented here tonight to continue making a real difference – so be the change that you want to see in the world and work with us to make it happen.

Whilst I am here I am going to make a confession.

  • It is a struggle at times but it is a struggle worth fighting for. I am thankful to people like Ryan, Jennie and Mikey for their support and who have helped this campaign to punch well above its weight.
  • We are not reaching everyone we want and need to reach. Which is why we need new volunteers to come forward and get involved. Especially from the communities that are not well represented. We need more women, more BME people and more Trans people.
  • We could do things better but we are doing the best we can with the limited time and resources we have available. Which is why we need more support – so please speak to the organisations that you belong to and get them to do something to support us as well.

Once again I want to thank everyone for helping us to make this event happen but it does not stop here. We have a duty to make sure that we do change the world so that it is a better place for all those who follow us – in the name of those we remember tonight.

Thank you.

(6)   2nd Address Edwin Sesange Out and Proud Diamond Group

Good evening everyone.

In many African nations, Caribbean, Asia and Russia hate crime is on the increase due to the homophobic attitudes of  some of the out spoken members of the general public. Hostility toward homosexuals has frequently led to bullying, discrimination, persecution, torture and murder of lgbti and gay rights activists or those perceived as lgbti.

A few weeks ago, in a speech at the UN, the Gambian President, Yahya Jammeh, claimed that ‘homosexuality is one of the biggest threats to human existence. We say hatred, judgement and people like Yahya Jammeh are the biggest threats to humanity.

Earlier this year, in July, Eric Ohena Lembembe, a prominent gay rights activist in Cameroon, was tortured and killed just weeks after issuing a public warning about the threat posed by what he termed “anti-gay thugs.”  Many more homosexuals are currently experiencing hate crimes and others are living under fear for their lives in Cameroon. 

In Jamaica a Country that prides itself with the one love slogan, however hate crime based on ones sexuality and gender On 21/07/2013 a 16 year old transgender Dwayne Jones was mob lynched. Late August 2013 Dean Morriah a gay man was brutally murdered in Jamaica.

In Uganda in 2009 MP David Bahati introduced the anti-homosexuality bill. It is generally accepted that it was this bill which stimulated the increase in anti-gay hate crimes committed by vigilantes in Uganda that led to the brutal murder of the gay rights activist David Kato in 2011.

Activists like me and others in out and proud diamond group are scared to live in our own countries. We are scared that if we did we would be the next David Kato or the next Eric Lembembe among others.  

Even in South-Africa, which has one of the most liberal constitutions in the world and which has legally criminalised discrimination on grounds of sexual preference,  in reality this  has not changed the way many South Africans think about or treat gay men and lesbians. Hate crimes are on rise against lgbti people and particularly against lesbians who suffer at the hands of gangs committing acts of so-called “corrective rape”.

So what is the way forward and how can we begin to affect change?

The African LGBTI Out & Proud Diamond Group was formed by lgbti and human rights activists to challenge homophobia , achieve equality and justice for the lgbti people in Africa and other parts of the world.  The group is currently not funded and it is run by members on a voluntary basis and many of them are victims of homophobic hate crimes.

We are aiming at changing the attitudes of the masses in anti- gay countries and also creating awareness of the homophobic hate crimes and anti-gay laws to the world through social medias, newspapers, radio, tv programmes, protests, demonstrations, campaigns, lobbying, seminars, workshops and conferences. Also challenging the perpetrators to understand the gravity of their hate crimes and hence stop them.

We are supporting those still living in homophobic countries and also integrate and support those who managed to flee persecution. We help members to learn to live an openly gay life which they are not used to in the receiving countries

Last week we held a protest outside the Gambian High Commission and over the summer we protested outside the Cameroonian Embassy,  the Jamaican embassy, during the Brighton pride and on other two occasions we joined larger protests being held against the increasing homophobia in Russia. 

We understand that the perpetrators of these hate crimes are part of the solution therefore we are looking forward to work with them, and also offer them support that help them to deal with their inner and outer  problems that lead them to commit homophobic hate crimes.

Empowering women in those anti-gay countries we believe that, there would be many mothers, sisters and aunties of gay men and women who would say “I don’t care what the rest of society or even the religious fundamentalists are saying about being gay, I still love my son/my daughter/my brother or sister and I will support you whatever laws the politicians make.” This will gradually eliminate homophobia. Losing the love and support of our families is often more hurtful to us than verbal or physical abuse from strangers.

In Africa, Russia and other parts of the world there have been reports that lgbti people  are encouraged and delighted that there are other people from many different countries caring and supporting them. We believe through peaceful means and working in partnership with other stakeholders we can achieve our goals.

We are calling upon everybody to support us through attending our events, joining us on social networks, or offer any support that can help us in the fight against homophobic hate crimes in Africa and other parts of the world.

Lastly we thank all those who have played a part in the fight against homophobic hate crimes. We would like to offer our sincerely thanks to Peter Tatchell foundation, KU bar, G-A-Y bars, women of colour and all media houses for their support for the support they have offered us so far.

(7)   London Gay Men’s Chorus

Drinking in the morning sun

Blinking in the morning sun

Shaking off a heavy one

Yeah, heavy like a loaded gun

 

What made me behave that way?

Using words I never say

I can only think it must be love

Oh anyway, it’s looking like a beautiful day

Someone tell me how I feel

It’s silly wrong, but vivid right

Oh, kiss me like a final meal

Yeah, kiss me like we die tonight

 

‘Cause holy cow, I love your eyes

And only now I see the light

Yeah, lying with you half awake

Oh, anyway, it’s looking like a beautiful day

 

When my face is chamois creased

If you think I wink, I did

Laugh politely at repeats

Yeah, kiss me when my lips are thin

 

‘Cause holy cow, I love your eyes

And only now I see the light

Yeah, lying with you half awake

Oh, anyway, it’s looking like a beautiful day

 

So throw those curtains wide

One day like this a year would see me right

Throw those curtains wide

One day like this a year would see me right

Throw those curtains wide

 

One day like this a year would see me right

Throw those curtains wide

One day like this a year would see me right

Throw those curtains wide

 

One day like this a year would see me right

Throw those curtains wide

One day like this a year would see me right

Throw those curtains wide

One day like this a year would see me right

(8)   3rd Address Rose Simkins Stop Hate UK

Stop Hate UK supports people who are affected by all forms of Hate Crime…

The mother of an eight year old boy who has been diagnosed with Autism, whose neighbours won’t stop making loud noise because they know it causes the child severe distress.

The shopkeeper who regularly receives racist and Islamophobic abuse from customers when they enter his shop but is afraid to talk to the police because next time it will be a brick through his shop window.

The lesbian women who are verbally abused by a taxi driver at the end of what was a good night out, when the taxi driver realises they’re a couple.

The trans woman who experiences around ten incidents each day, and mostly tries to ignore them but after the last incident, where a man called her a name in the street, it all became too much and now she feels like she wants to kill herself.

Hate Crime devastates lives. Every day people are suffering because of other people’s prejudices and hatred. People are targeted, AND sometimes killed, simply because of who they are.

If we ignore what is happening to us then we are allowing ourselves to be ignored and unnoticed and noone deserves to be ignored.

Agencies need to talk to each other and try to find ways to overcome the barriers to reporting. We need to make sure that victims are able to talk about their experiences of Hate Crime and witnesses feel able to tell others what they have seen or heard. Perpetrators should be punished for the harm they cause and their attitudes challenged before it is too late and their offending escalates.

Nobody who is experiencing Hate Crime should have to suffer in silence. Let us work together to stop Hate Crime.

Thank you for listening.

(9)   4th Address Clare Dimyon MBE Pride Solidarity

Дорогие друзья! Dear Friends!

This “No-2-Hate” event is stunning testimony that ordinary people, like every single one of us here tonight, can and do make all the difference. Like that difference we made to Section 28, the original “homosexual propaganda” law. I remember the dread I felt as that was enacted, the kind of dread that is now falling over LGBT people across the Russian Federation and Ukraine.

Our “Section 28” lasted for 15 years, 15 years too long, with negative effects that are with us to this day. This “YES-to-LOVE” campaign will not “be over by Christmas”… or even the Sochi Olympics, or even, by 2018 when the Russian Federation hosts the Football World Cup.  Russian LGBT+ people need to feel that we are with them not just now but also for the long haul. 

It is our Section 28 experience, we can draw upon, in our efforts to support Russian LGBT plus people as they face these far more severe laws, which forbid anyone at all from telling the Truth about “homosexuality”.  A lot of LGBT people in the Russian speaking world simply do not know that Britain had a “homosexual propaganda” law, nor that it was overturned as recently as 2003 nor that it was voted for and apologised for by our current Prime Minister. 

They need to know that their story is part of a reliable trend in which “It gets worse before it gets better” but “It does get BETTER”. In the language of Harvey Milk’s forebears: “Надо дать им надежду.” “You have got to give them Hope.”

Homophobia in all its forms  in the Russian Federation, Ukraine, Belarus and the rest of the former Soviet/Russian speaking world is far more severe than anything we experienced. That needs placing in the context of countries finding their way, in newly emerging democracies, still recovering from the crippling effects of totalitarian rule and social dislocation, where ordinary people, in general, are treated dreadfully, but in which LGBT people and their families are far, far more vulnerable.

“Size matters” isn’t that what they say? At conservative estimates the Russian LGBT population number some 7-8 million people outnumbering the populations of all three Baltic States and about the same as the population as Bulgaria!  T

here is a 3 hour time difference between us here in London and the Russian LGBT Network in St Petersburg. We need to understand the logistical challenges facing activists. There is a NINE hour time difference between them in the west and activists in Khabarovsk & Vladivostok, & the Kamchatkan LGBT are on the other side of Japan! If Russian LGBT people are lucky, they are within reach of major cities but when they are isolated, they are very isolated, often poor (like we can’t imagine) and very vulnerable indeed.

I wish I had time to tell you about  the  inspirational LGBT people I met in Russia, that hilarious but finally cordial encounter with the arch-homophobe of St Petersburg who, with his chums, hijacked the LGBT Seminar.  Of  Vyacheslav officiating at the lesbian wedding in Syktyvkar, north of the Arctic Circle, in which heterosexuals out-numbered the LGBT!

And the Euro Footie Championships in Ukraine when St Georgina, and her not very homophobic dragon, paraded TWICE with a rainbow flag through the streets of Kharkiv (as far east as Moscow).  The rainbow flag was not only safe  but was only prevented from making any progress by grinning Russians & Ukrainians lining the 4km route, who all wanted their photo taking with the rainbow flag…especially the LGBT, who could be identified by the delight in their eyes!

There was that gulp as I said “Da ya Lezbianka” to an unsuspecting Russian in the Fanzone in Donetsk, but with a little processing that ended with warm hugs and the traditional friendship photo, two fans, two flags; one Russian: one Rainbow in the middle of Donetsk at the far end of Ukraine.

But on the night of Stonewall, in this same city, while I waved my rainbow flag in the stadium at the semi-final (as seen on Polish TV), I was a telephonic witness to the aftermath of a homophobic attack on the other side of the city.  The following day, I tried to comfort Oleg and his mother.  I learnt that it was his birthday and this was his 4th homophobic assault.  In a previous incident, the Ukrainian police had told this gentle giant that he had invited a hospitalising assault by “acting too gay”. He was certainly off my gaydar!

I promised  both Oleg and his mother that this attack would NOT be for nothing and would be made to count.   Later that day, both the racism of the English fans and the homophobic attack, were duly reported to the Mayor of Donetsk and subsequently to other Ukrainian officials, who all received this account with genuine concern and regret.  I can do no better than give you Oleg’s greeting tonight: “Oleg is alive, happy and enjoying life! He loves his Rainbow Mum, Clare, who helped him to believe in himself and to respect himself, despite everything.”

So, I am here to say “YES-to-LOVE”, “ДA… до Любовью” to all the citizens across the whole Russian Federation, and the whole Russian speaking world as they start this dialogue that was not so easy in the “West” in settled democracies.

ДA… до России…”Yes to Russia” “Yes to Ukraine”

As it says in the Bible:

“Твой народ стал моим народом”

“Your people are my people”

(10)    Poet Dean Atta “To LGBT Russia with Love”

They create hate

To separate

And scapegoat us

Wherever we are

From Russia to Nigeria

The Kremlin

To the National Assembly

The law denies us equality

To be attacked

Or beaten in the street

Is a part of our reality

Even here in the UK

That has happened to me

Where there are laws to protect

Doesn’t make us free to express

Who we were born to be

Whether you are L, G, B or T

We are a community, by necessity

When any one of us is persecuted

We should all take it personally

We are a family

Dysfunctional like all the rest

Not the worst and not the best

Not cursed and not blessed

Just people

Who deserve to be equal

Because we all are

Just people

Teachers, doctors, engineers

Athletes, actors, not puffs and queers

Not trannies, not faggots, not dykes

Just human beings

With human rights

If I say your country

Would be poorer without you

And your life

Would be richer elsewhere

Is that fair?

Because if your country

Has your heart

Who am I to tell you to leave?

We have to be

The change we want to see

Not hide or run but overcome

And yes it’s easy for me to say

Here in the UK

I don’t have to live in fear everyday

So I wouldn’t blame you

If you didn’t stay From Moscow, Russia to Kingston, JA

I don’t know what I’d do

In your position

All I’ve done here is sign a petition

Write a poem and tweet about it

It’s not enough

How will this keep you going

When it gets so tough

You consider taking your own life?

Looking at a gun, a rope or a knife

Like an exit sign

Out of this hell that you’re living in

What would my words mean then

When you’re so close to giving in?

Because of tireless hate

Abuse and rejection

This poem

Cannot provide you any protection

But it might

Remind you that you are not alone

Brothers and sisters

Your struggle is known

All over the world

This family is growing

With straight allies too

Until one day

Those you fight will stand by you.

(11)  London Gay Men’s Chorus

If your heart always did

What a normal heart should do

If you always play a part

Instead of being who you really are

Then you might just miss

The one who’s standing there

So instead of passing by

Show him that you care

Instead asking why

Why me? And why you?

Why not we two?

‘Cause love don’t need a reason

Love don’t always rhyme

And love is all we have for now

What we don’t have is time

If we always believe

All the madness that we’re taught

Never questioning the rules

Then we’re living lies we bought so long ago

How are they to know?

It’s not who’s wrong or right

It’s just another way

And it’s not about a fight

It’s just I wanna stay with you till the end

With you my friend

‘Cause love don’t need a reason

Love don’t always rhyme

And love is all we have for now

What we don’t have is time

I’ll hold you close

Time can’t tear us apart

Forever, I will stand by you

We’ve got to start with the beat of one heart

Together, we will see this through

‘Cause love don’t need a reason

Love’s never a crime

And love is all we have for now

What we don’t have is

What we don’t have is time

(12) Final Blessing

O Lord,

support us all the day long

of this troublous life

until the shades lengthen,

the evening comes,

the busy world is hushed,

and our work is done.

Then, Lord, in your mercy,

grant us safe lodging,

a holy rest and peace at the last. Amen.

To a troubled world, peace.

To a searching world, love.

To a waiting world, hope.

 

Afterwards the National Candle of Hope and Remembrance under the Dome will be moved to the Middlesex Chapel where it will burn each day until 19th October.

Guests were invited to sit quietly or make your way out of the Cathedral when you were ready ready.

Everyone was welcome to light a candle under the dome before they left.

There was a retiring collection in aid of five anti-hate crime charities/organisations;17-24-30, Disability Hate Crime Network, Galop, Inclusion For All and Stop Hate UK

This raised £281.84

(13) Piano Music

  • Organised by St Pauls

(14)  Ends

Afterwards some of us stopped outside St Paul’s Cathedral to talk to and have photos taken with members of Queer Strike who were holding banners “Stop All Hate Crimes” “Stop Police/HO Hate Crimes”.

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

Hopefully their work and ours will help bring an end to all forms of hate crime.

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STOP HATE UK – HELPLINE DETAILS

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Stop Hate UK is a national charity that supports people affected by Hate Crime. The organisation provides support to victims, witnesses and third parties through its helpline services.

The Stop Hate Line is open 24 hours a day, every day of the year, to support people affected by any form of Hate Crime in some parts of the UK. To find out whether your area is covered visit the Stop Hate UK website by clicking here.

If your area is covered you can report Hate Crime and receive support 0800 138 1625; or use one of the contact methods listed here.

Learning-Disability-Logo-Large-Hand-FINAL

Stop Hate’s Stop Learning Disability Hate Crime Helpline is open 24 hours a day, every day of the year, to support people affected by Learning Disability Hate Crime anywhere in England or Wales. Report Learning Disability Hate Crime in England and Wales and receive support on 0808 802 1155  or online here.

Stop Hate UK also provides a number of other services to individuals and organisations nationally. To find out more about Stop Hate UK’s services, including how to get them in your area, please contact info@stophateuk.org.

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