Well-known human rights campaigner Peter Tatchell has become a patron of People’s Pride Southampton.
Best known for his work on LGBTQ+ rights, Mr Tatchell becomes the charity’s second patron, alongside author and campaigner Dr Sophie Cook.
A spokesperson for People’s Pride Southampton said “This reflects the values shared by PPS and Peter Tatchell. Those values include championing rights of LGBTQ+ people and offering accessible and inclusive events for them and their allies amongst his 54+ years of activism within the LGBT+ community.
“During a time of lockdown and isolation, we have been inundated with LGBT+ people needing our support and assistance. People’s Pride Southampton has also had to adapt to different ways of working such as WhatsApp and online video calls. We hope with the support of Peter Tatchell and Dr. Sophie Cook that we can spread the message far and wide about the support and other services we offer all year round. We are a small non commercially backed charity that relies on public support to keep our support services and events free to all.”
Peter Tatchell, Director of the Peter Tatchell Foundation, said: “I’m honoured to be a patron of People’s Pride Southampton. It works the year round to support the LGBTQ+ community and is hosting a completely accessible and inclusive Pride event, with no commercial sponsors. LGBTQ+ people have made great gains but there are still issues to win, including a ban on attempts to ‘cure’ LGBTQ+ people and an end to the demonisation of trans men and women by the tabloid press.”
He continued: “Even today nearly half of all young LGBTQ+ people say they were bullied at school and a third of LGBTQ+ people have been victims of hate crime. The battle of LGBTQ+ respect and dignity is not over yet.”
Levi Wellman, chairwoman of People’s Pride Southampton, added: “As chairwoman of People’s Pride Southampton, I welcome Peter Tatchell and Dr. Cook wholeheartedly. It is very motivating for me, and the charity as a whole, to welcometwo patrons with an ethos as well aligned as ours.”
People’s Pride Southampton was started in January 2020 and became a registered charity in October 2020. By providing inclusive accessible events and support services, the charity provides support to the LGBT+ community and their family members and allies. This helps to increase the visibility of LGBT+ people in the community and support their on-going wellbeing.
The charity is planning a huge two day non-commercially backed and inclusive pride event in Southampton in 2022, alongside a string of other community based events.
For more information, visit www.peoplesprideuk.com.