LGBTQ+ rights: the importance of awareness campaigns

Date: 27/01/2022 Written by: Anna 2 minutes to read.
Campaigning for LGBTQ+ rights and acceptance

Awareness campaigns are vital for educating the public on LGBTQ+ identities, history and rights. In this blog, our Social Researcher Anna explores the important role these campaigns continue to play in changing attitudes and helping diverse societies to grow.

Awareness campaigns: What’s all the hubbub?

Awareness campaigns are designed to boost public knowledge about a particular cause or issue. For the LGBTQ+ community, they’ve been vital in educating the public on current or historical events and rights issues, as well as for boosting visibility and understanding about different identities.

 

Do they have an impact?

Campaigns that publicise gender and sexual identities have an important role to play in supporting diverse societies to grow, because this visibility helps to change attitudes around what it means to be LGBTQ+ and encourages people to come out safely. One of the ways we spread awareness is through national and international holidays designed to celebrate, inform, or mourn different identities and subjects, like Transgender Day of Visibility (31st March). This is a day to celebrate transgender and nonbinary pride, while raising awareness of the discrimination they experience.

As well as helping to foster community acceptance, opening up the dialogue around LGBTQ+ rights can catalyse social change. For example, in response to widespread campaigns and petitioning over the past year, the UK Government is now moving to ban the harmful practice of conversion therapy from spring 2022. Awareness campaigns targeted to a particular issue such as this can draw lots of attention, and help people identify their role in driving for change and get involved.

 

Equal rights - are we there yet?

Year on year, the LGBTQ+ community and our allies make ground on accessing deserved rights, protections and acceptance. However, both internationally and in the UK, there are more issues that we still need to lobby for. Awareness campaigns have a large part to play in drawing public attention to LGBTQ+ activism and highlighting discrimination. For example, it was only in September 2020 that nonbinary identities became a protected characteristic under the Equality Act. In the absence of legal protection, tackling workplace discrimination against nonbinary, agender and genderfluid employees relies on awareness campaigns to educate and appeal to colleagues and employers.

We’ve still got a long way to go for LGBTQ+ freedom, and raising awareness in the public domain continues to play an important role. Awareness campaigns are an accessible way for the public to engage with LGBTQ+ issues, and are essential to boosting understanding and tolerance.

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