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LGBTQ+ Month

February is the month of love in multiple ways. Not only does it have the universal

day for celebrating love, Valentine’s Day, but it has also become the LGBTQ +

history month. 

Throughout history life has been difficult for people of certain sexualities, with there

being a lot of stigma, and sometimes even hate, towards people who don’t identify

as heterosexual. Not only this, but until recently people who identified as LGBTQ+

didn’t receive the same rights as ‘straight’ people. For example, it wasn’t until 2013

that same sex marriage was made legal in the UK, and there are still even some

countries that don’t allow it. 

The world has come a long way, with people being much more accepting of those

who choose to identify themselves as LGBTQ+, however there is still much more

that needs to be done to ensure that everyone is treated equally and have equal

rights, and to change some of the negative attitudes and stereotypes held by certain

members of society.

Below are some key events and things that have happened which helped towards

the recognition and equal rights of the LGBTQ+ community, and that paved the way

towards creating a more open and accepting society.


The First Known Sexual Reassignment Surgery


In 1926, Christine Jorgensen became the first person to publicly transition,

undergoing sexual reassignment surgery to change from a male to a female. This

became a worldwide sensation, and since then more and more people have chosen

to transition in order to identify as the gender they most associate with. It is now

much more widely accepted and welcomed than it was when it first started to

happen, however there are still some parts of society and places in the world who

disagree with gender realignment, and more needs to be done to try and remove the

negative stigma still surrounding those who are transgender.


Civil Partnership Act


In 2004, the civil partnership act was passed, which allowed same sex couples to

unite and have their relationship legally recognised, receiving the same rights as

married couples. 

It wasn’t until 2013, almost 10 years later, that it became legal for couples of the

same sex to get married.


Gender Recognition Act


Whilst the first known transition was in 1926, it wasn’t until 2005 that it became legal

for an individual to change their gender and to be recognised as their desired

gender. 

However, currently an individual can only legally be recognised as male and female,

there is no option under the law to be seen as non-binary or any other gender, so

this is a step that still needs to be taken.


Supreme Court Rules in Favour of Gay Rights


In January 1958, for the first time in history, the supreme court ruled in favour of gay

rights after the post-office refused to deliver a publication that was pro-gay.

Whilst a lot has been done to promote equal rights for people of all sexual

orientations, there is still much more that needs to be done in terms of gay rights. For

example, non-binary people can’t identify as this on their passport, same-sex

marriage is still illegal in places such as Northern Ireland, and in the majority of

schools they don’t include LGBTQ+ in their sexual education lessons.

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