Campaign in the Media and Press for a more positive image of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) People

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2009 National LGBT Conference
28 July 2009

Conference accepts that over the last decade the profile of LGBT people in public life has increased and there is more recognition of the equal rights of LGBT people within UK society. However, we know that despite these strides, the images of LGBT people in the media and press is still couched in stereotype and either linked to the notion of celebrity or some “outlandish” forms of behaviour. This means that the overall effect is that the wider public understanding of the diversity and difference within the LGBT community is still limited and may only be balanced out by personal experience.

Outside of the Gay press and the occasional broadsheet article we are still not provided with sufficient rounded portraits of LGBT people, where LGBT people are living lives not dissimilar to their heterosexual counterparts, living with the same complexities that heterosexual people face and also where LGBT people are surviving or facing battles in the face of adversity, whether it be on a local, national or world wide context. We know hate crimes against LGBT people are being committed on a daily basis, and there is a gross under reporting of LGBT hate crimes or incidents, neither of which is given enough attention in the wider press and media circles.

Therefore, we call on the National LGBT Committee to develop a communication strategy which incorporates a toolkit that:-

1.Includes a fact sheet with how to deal with the unfair reporting within the media and press;

2.Handy hints about how to complain about offensive or inaccurate reporting and who to complain to;

3.Examples of successful campaigns that have been fought on behalf of LGBT people and lessons learnt;

4.How current legislation can be used to support the rights of LGBT people that face unfair treatment.