Back to all Motions

Lesbian,Gay,Bisexual & Transgender Conference 2005
29 July 2005
Carried as Amended

Conference notes the continued prevalence of bi-, homo- and trans-phobic bullying among children and young people and the continued absence, largely, of positive image of Lesbians, Gay men, Bisexuals and Trans people from children’s and young people’s services.

Conference believes that schools, playgrounds, youth clubs, children’s homes etc. should be safe places for all Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) children and young people as well as for those who do not wish to conform to a conventional masculine or feminine stereotype.

Conference welcomes the acknowledgement by the Department for Education and Skills (DfES) that schools’ valuing and motivating all pupils is integral to raising achievement. It welcomes DfES support for LGB&T History Month.

However, Conference notes there are mixed messages from the DfES and elsewhere in the United Kingdom government, for example the green papers “Every Child Matters” and “Youth Matters” omit all reference to sexuality or gender identity.

Conference considers that these mixed messages leave strategic and operational managers uncertain what is required so they, in turn, seldom offer guidance or training to frontline workers.

Conference welcomes the resolution of this year’s Trades Union Congress (TUC) LGB&T Conference to urge the DfES to commission further research on the needs of LGBT children and young people and to lead a dialogue to promote real change in schools. Conference, however, regrets the omission from the resolution of reference to children’s and young people’s services other than schools.

Besides a more wholehearted political lead, Conference considers that promoting change will depend, crucially, on a more systematic approach to training so it is:

1.More widely available and easily accessible;

2.Of better quality and more rigorously evaluated; and,

3.Available to -better, required of – employers, managers and frontline workers alike.

Conference instructs the National LGBT Committee to:

A.Continue to work with the TUC LGB&T Committee on this question but urge it to widen its remit to include the whole of children’s and young people’s services, not just schools;

B.Discuss with appropriate National Service Group Committees etc. how the objectives above can be integrated into UNISON’s bargaining agenda;

C.Conduct a survey of how local authorities’ Children’s and Young People’s Services Departments are training managers and workers to deliver work on LGBT issues; and,

D.Seek and disseminate examples of good practice and information about training resources.

E.Consider how best to support the development of LGBT History Month.