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Trade Unions host LGBT+ conference ahead of London Pride

The Trades Union Congress (TUC) hosted an LGBT+ conference on 4 July, ahead of London Pride 2019.

The conference brought together many members of the National Union of Journalists (NUJ), to discuss the issues and challenges still facing the LGBT+ community around the UK.

The event opened with a minute’s silence for Lyra McKee, the 29-year old journalist who was killed in Derry in April.

Adam Christie, NUJ national executive member, celebrated Lyra’s vision of a more equal and compassionate Northern Ireland, saying that Lyra had "planned to propose to the love of her life, Sara Canning from Derry, knowing that they were denied the right to marry in Northern Ireland.”

The minute’s silence followed the opening of the conference by Frances O’Grady, TUC general secretary. She thanked the delegates for all their work: “Great campaigns. Amazing victories. An inspiring struggle for equality, justice and love. But - let’s be honest - this is also a year when the political dinosaurs have staged a comeback.”

 

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NUJ delegate Ann Galpin told delegates that Pride in London had changed its rules of access for journalists covering the parade, leaving many without access to areas they needed to be in.

She said: “Professional news photographers should not be excluded from a public event in this way. Pride London is a political march which is fast becoming a corporate takeover. We need to ensure unfettered access to the press to highlight the celebration all things LGBT+.”

The conference also heard from Angela Rayner, shadow secretary of state for education. There had been a panel session on the need for a more LGBT+ inclusive education system and she said a Labour government would make sure there was no opt out from equality – in schools or elsewhere.

She added: “Transphobia today reminds me of the open homophobia I saw growing up in the eighties and nineties. Bigotry should never be acceptable.”