Cotswold councillors debate International Day Against Homophobia at Cabinet meeting
DESPITE refusing to officially recognise International Day Against Homophobia, Cotswold District Council has said it is still completely against any form of discrimination.
Cllr Lynden Stowe, leader of CDC, said it is not in the authority’s practice to mark particular events linked to any minority or protected group.
He made the remarks at a cabinet meeting on Thursday, April 3 after being asked by his Lib Deb counterpart Cllr Paul Hodgkinson whether the council had plans to observe International Day Against Homophobia on Saturday, May 17.
Cllr Hodgkinson said: “Although homophobia is rightly on the decrease in the UK, it still remains an issue for some gay people who are subject to bullying and threats.”
He also drew attention to Cirencester schoolgirl Jasmine Clarkson, who committed suicide last November.
At an inquest into her death last month, it was heard that the 14-year-old had told her parents she thought she might be bisexual.
Responding to the question, Cllr Stowe said that there are many events in the council’s calendar such as Black History Month that are not given official recognition.
“Unless a blanket approach was adopted, it could be very difficult to decide which days and events to support,” he said.
He did, however, say that the council was a member of the Cotswold and Stroud Hate Crime Group, which monitors all forms of discrimination, including homophobia, in the district.
Cllr Hodgkinson said he was “saddened and disappointed” by the leader’s response.
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