Friday, 24 June 2011

LGBT History Flickbook

Following on from the LGBT History display that LGF had up back in February, earlier this month I found a shiny little booklet. And lo, there are online versions of both.

They're very pretty with a good smattering of dates and range of 'stuff' from queer history.  Groups, theories, therapy of varying reputability, events, legal changes for better or worse, and so on. It has a healthcare theme but lots of stuff beyond that too.

There are a few problems with it, it has to be said. There is a dollop of inappropriate party bias: a good Labour thing is ostentatiously credited to Labour, a bad Tory thing to the Tories, a good Liberal thing carefully skims giving any credit. And particularly grating, there is a noticeable lack of the B strand in LGBT. The North West has been quite a hub in the bi movement of the last 20 or 30 years: we've the longest-running bi group in the UK, and a record of bi social and political organising stretching back before then. Big events have been held here, like the 6th International Conference on Bisexuality (with 20 countries represented). But where things like Lesbian Community Project or trans group TREC, LG and T newsletters and inky magazines are talked about, the bi counterparts go unmentioned. Which is a shame, and consistent enough to look like it might be deliberate.

And NHS North West has 'form'.  In their 2009 report 'One Year On' they proudly proclaimed of their diversity work that:
"These agreements allow cross-cutting issues to be tackled by all groups, for example the lesbian, gay and bisexual (LGB) stakeholder organisation has been able to address how issues of sexual orientation affect gay men and lesbian women, BME people, people with disabilities, people at different ages, trans people, and LGB people’s religion or belief."

I've tried a couple of routes in to NHS North West for some kind of comment on how and why
that editorial balance decision on the L, G, B and T was made this time; no answers yet. Expect more blogging here if I get an answer out of anyone, and I'll enjoy scribbling some kind of a writeup in the queer press either way.

But still: a fabulously designed, deliciously informative set of publications. Hurrah for it being there: remember how long it used to take to find out about your queer history?

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