Thursday, 24 January 2019

LGBT History Month Launch Evening

LGBT History Month 2019
Launch Evening
@MPSTowerHam @SwanHousing @thLGBT_Voices @TowerHamletsNow

Friday 1st February 2019 6.30pm – 9pm
(arrival, refreshments & pre-event networking from 5.30pm)
The Reach Community Hub
11 Oliphant Street, London, E14 0GB
(see ‘getting here’ instructions and map on back page)

17.30 – 18.25: Arrival, refreshments and pre-event networking

18.25 – 18.30: Welcome and introductions
Lee Hawkins, Hate Crime Coordinator, Metropolitan Police
Sarah Humphreys, Chair, ELOP and Tower Hamlets LGBT Voices

18.30 – 19.30: ‘People, Power and Parliament’
Charlotte Dobson, Senior Community Outreach Officer for Parliament in London
@CharlotteD_Hop   @YourUKParl

The ‘People, Power and Parliament’ session will cover the basics of How Parliament works and how members of the public can get involved. With a focus on LGBT rights, Charlotte will cover the different ways in which MPs and members of the House of Lords can raise issues on your behalf as well as how you can begin to influence the UK Parliament and get your voice heard.

19.30 – 20.00: Activism & Reconciliation: LGBT+ Community and the Police
Pliny Soocoormanee, Executive Assistant, Peter Tatchell Foundation

The year 1967 is an important milestone for LGBT History, it marks the partial decriminalisation of homosexuality in England. The very first steps on a very long road, a very long road of the struggle for LGBT+ liberation.

The law & the police have not always been on the side of the LGBT+ community. Tonight we will remember the tense relationship between these two groups paying special attention to some milestone events. We will consider how activism and the change in law played a role in reshaping the relationship between the police and the LGBT+ community. Long gone are the days of harassment and entrapment, today the police take homophobic hate crimes seriously and they are present in full uniform at Pride marches. Change does happen! 

20.00 – 20.20: European Court of Human Rights - Challenging ‘the age of consent’
Richard Desmond, Chair of Victoria Park Friends, Activist and Volunteer

Richard Desmond’s European Court of Human Rights case was the first to challenge the age of consent, when he was 16, with the brilliant Barrister Peter Ashman really doing the work, it failed but it proved the principle that cases could be taken. 

20.20 – 20.50: ‘Any Old Iron’
Linda Wilkinson, Award-winning Author, Playwright and Historian

Throughout history the London Borough of Tower Hamlets has been on the edge. The edge of the City, the edge of acceptability and nowadays perhaps just edgy. Is it pure romanticism to think that we also had an edge on tolerance for difference? Join us for a look back over the centuries, including the 21st, to see how our forbearers lived, loved and helped establish the nature of the East End.

20.50 – 21.00: Closing Remarks
Lee Hawkins, Hate Crime Coordinator, Metropolitan Police
Nicóla Puma, LGBT Events & Community Worker, ELOP and Tower Hamlets LGBT Voices

About the speakers

Session 1 (18.30): ‘People, Power and Parliament’
Charlotte Dobson, Senior Community Outreach Officer for Parliament in London
@CharlotteD_Hop   @YourUKParl

Charlotte Dobson is a Senior Community Outreach Officer for Parliament, covering London and the South East. The focus of her role is deliver interactive presentations and workshops to help increase public understanding and engagement with Parliament.

Charlotte is particularly passionate about delivering sessions out in the community and working with groups of people that are stereotypically less likely to become involved in Politics which includes young people, black and ethnic minority groups, women and disabled adults. Consequently lots of time is spent travelling across London and seeking out grassroots organisations to work with.

Session 2 (19.30): Activism & Reconciliation: LGBT+ Community and the Police
Pliny Soocoormanee, Executive Assistant, Peter Tatchell Foundation

Pliny Soocoormanee is the Executive Assistant to Peter Tatchell and has been actively involved in LGBT+ activism since the campaign for same-sex marriage in 2012. He was once detained by the Police with Peter Tatchell while disrupting a meeting of the British Iranian chamber of commerce while highlighting the issue of human rights abuse of Ahwazi Arabs. 

He has supported numerous LGBT+ initiatives in Shropshire and the West Midlands as well as LGBT+ organisations in Mauritius. He dreams of a world where people will no longer be persecuted based on their sexual orientation.  In his free time, Pliny is an avid historical reenactor and tends to do a lot of running.

Session 3 (20.00): European Court of Human Rights - challenging ‘the age of consent’
Richard Desmond, Chair of Victoria Park Friends, Activist and Volunteer
Richard Desmond is a long serving volunteer with LGBT Switchboard and has been on various committees and numerous organisations over the years. 

Richard was diagnosed with HIV (HTLV III) in 1985 and has been involved in HIV activism since then. Richard currently serves on the UK Community Advisory Board and the Minorities of Gender & Sexuality Special Interest Group (MGS SIG), of the British Association for Sexual Health & HIV (BASHH) as well as being Chair of Victoria Park Friends and active within the local community.

Session 3 (20.20): ‘Any Old Iron’
Linda Wilkinson, Award-winning Author, Playwright and Historian

Linda Wilkinson is an award-winning author, playwright and historian.

Born in Bethnal Green her family roots in the East End can be traced back to the1600’s. She has also been a scientist and Chair of Amnesty International UK and founder member of Amnesty’s global networks for LGBT Human Rights.

Getting Here

Address: The Reach Community Hub, 11 Oliphant Street, London, E14 0GB.

Nearest stations: All Saints DLR or Blackwall Reach DLR (To plan journeys from other London stations e.g. Stratford use the journey planner at

(For Sat Navs / Google Maps please use the post code of our office next door – 9 Webber Path, London, E14 0FZ)

Tuesday, 22 January 2019

from one of our members at the Trafalgar Studios, few seats left...

Click here for tickets 9 January - 2 February 2019 @ Trafalgar Studios

Praise for past work

“worthy of a place in your memory.”
★★★★ The Independent

"Deft, restraining and moving theatre.”
★★★★ Time Out

"Brilliant, devastating theatre, marking Tristan Bernays out as an outstanding talent amongst his generation."
★★★★ Jonathan Baz Reviews
"Emotionally piercing and beautifully acted, it leaves a lasting ache." 
The Stage

Critics Choice - The Independent
Critics Choice - The Telegraph
Critics Choice - The Times
Critics Choice - The UpComing
Critics Choice - British Theatre Guide

"It feels timely, uncomfortable, and riveting: a worthy revival…Che Walker’s production is often breath-holdingly tense”
★★★★ Libby Purves | Theatre Cat

★★★★ “This strong production, directed by Ché Walker, strips the play back to its basics & is riveting” Ann Treneman | The Times

“Triumphantly revived… Abbey Wright’s crisp, clear production could hardly feel more contemporary.”
★★★★ Kate Maltby | The Times

Wednesday, 16 January 2019

United in Strength (A new LBT+ Domestic Violence Service)

Hi there,

I am contacting you to introduce United in Strength, an LBT+ Domestic Violence service ran by Outcome at Mind. We are currently looking for LBT+ women who could kindly donate a few hours of their time, as a one off or on a more regular basis to share a skill, some knowledge or a workshop with our service user group.
United in Strength provide a service supporting women who are experiencing, or have recently experienced domestic violence and/or abuse. United in Strength are staffed exclusively by LBT women. There has been a desperate need for an LBT women only domestic violence service and to address this need we have created a safe and supportive environment.
We run every Tuesday, alongside Outcome, an LGBTQ+ mental health service ran by LGBTQ+ people. Outcome provides a therapeutic drop in space with a range of therapies and services to improve mental health and well-being. There is also homemade lunch, organised optional activities including creative writing and drama.
United in Strength provide:
  • One on one emotional support with an experienced DV worker
  • A befriending service
  • A timetable of workshops to build resilience and self-esteem
  • Access to Outcome services
As we understand, there are several aspects of domestic violence/abuse that are unique to LBT women. On that basis we are happy to come to your organisation to talk about LBT domestic violence and the issues that affect LBT women to both staff and service users, if useful.
Attached to this email is a leaflet that we would be grateful if you could share with your colleagues. If you, or anyone you know would like to have a further conversation about potentially running a day/half day workshop, please reply by return.
Many thanks
Melissa Johanson
Outcome LBT Domestic Violence Worker- Islington Mind LGBT+ for better mental health
outcome logo 3
Tuesday - 35 Ashley Road, London N19 3AG Tel: 020 7272 5038
Islington MIND is a Registered Charity No. 294535.  It is registered in England as a company limited by guarantee No. 02002508.