Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn’s Message for Pride 2017
8 July 2017
Today, people come together at Pride. It’s the cornerstone of promoting equality for the LGBT Plus community. Whether you’ve been at one of the fantastic events in recent weeks or you’re at the parade itself, you’re playing a crucial part in sending an uplifting message of celebration and pride.
Pride also gives us an opportunity to reflect on key achievements in the long and ongoing struggle for LGBT Plus rights. It allows us to celebrate past and present leaders, activists, collectives and campaigns who have fought over decades for hard-won recognition and LGBT Plus rights.
For Labour, it’s an opportunity for us to celebrate our achievements in the fight for LGBT Plus equality. This month marks 50 years since the decriminalisation of homosexuality in 1967, which was achieved by a Private Member’s Bill under a Labour government. It was Labour who repealed Section 28, passed legislation which meant trans people could have their true gender recognised in law, gave LGBT people the right to adopt children, and our final achievement was the landmark Equality Act in 2010.
But we can’t rest on our laurels. With huge cuts to LGBT Plus services, reports of transphobic hate crimes rising by 170% over five years, and a lack of good relationship education in schools means we still have a long way to go to support LGBT Plus people.
Internationally, this year has seen the horrific treatment of gay men in Chechnya, and at least 76 countries still retain horrific laws that criminalise and harass people on the basis of their sexual orientation and gender identity. Together, we can challenge this discrimination.
The message of Pride is that no one should suffer discrimination for who they love. Pride’s theme this year is “Love Happens Here”. At difficult times, it is our love for our neighbours – whether we know them or not – that is the strength of our communities.
The Labour Party is the party of equality, and I am proud to work with many talented colleagues from the LGBT Plus community. Our strength is our diversity, and through this, we can drive towards equality.
Enjoy yourself today. Take strength in the solidarity which you give one another. Challenge those who seek to discriminate and divide until we secure a truly fair and equal society that we can all be proud of.