House of Commons Speaker hosts the launch of “Kaleidoscope;” Congratulations from GAY U.S.A. the Movie and Blog
Posted by Melanie Nathan
The Speaker of the House of Commons, the Rt. Hon. John Bercow MP, hosted a reception tonight (Tuesday) to launch Kaleidoscope, a new organization to support gay men and lesbians around the world who face prejudice and discrimination. The reception, in the Speaker’s State Rooms, was attended by up to 150 people including politicians, human rights activists and supporters. ‘Kaleidoscope’ has been backed by the three main UK party leaders, the First Ministers of Scotland and Wales, the TUC and many other organizations. Prime Minister David Cameron sent a message of support saying Britain should be a “global beacon for reform” on the issue of LGBT rights.
One of the founding members of Kaleidoscope, Bisi Alimi, who was forced to leave his home country, Nigeria, because of his sexuality, spoke at the reception:
“My life was threatened but I have had another opportunity to live. The likes of David Kato in Uganda, the three gay men who were recently hanged in Iran and the numerous lesbians raped and killed in South Africa were not as lucky as me. This is the reason I, and many other LGBT activists, are delighted that Kaleidoscope is doing something new. Something that has never been done before.”
The director of Kaleidoscope, Lance Price, spoke and said: “The scale of the task appears daunting and it is. But wherever there has been progress, where unjust laws have been repealed, and where homophobic attitudes have been successfully challenged, the process was invariably started by a few brave individuals. They felt isolated, they faced abuse and attack, but they knew that they had what was right on their side.
“There are men and women with just the same courage, facing just the same threats and dangers, in every country where discrimination and persecution persist. They too have right on their side. With your help they can feel less isolated and be better equipped to take on the challenge they face.” In a statement welcoming the launch, Alan Duncan MP, Minister of State at the Department of International Development, said: “It is outrageous that people across the world are still subject to arrest, detention or even death simply because of their sexual orientation or gender identity and this government is fully committed to advancing LGB&T equality and challenge discrimination wherever it occurs.”
Organizations that have welcomed the launch of Kaleidoscope include Stonewall, the Human Dignity Trust, Justice for Gay Africans, Gay Middle East and the Peter Tatchell Foundation. Kaleidoscope is seeking donations large and small to help fight homophobia around the world through its website: www.kaleidoscopetrust.com
We at GAY U.S.A. the Movie and Blog also extend our offer of support for the group in the hope that their work will serve as the much needed catalyst in the repudiation of homosexuality’s criminalization around the world.
The Kaleidoscope Trust is a non -profit organization registered in the UK at Companies House. Its main priorities are: Capacity building and leadership development in countries where there is an immediate crisis or where there is an emerging movement seeking international partners with the expertise and added value that Kaleidoscope can provide. Network development between countries that share historic, cultural or other affinities.
Opinion forming / changing through debate at all levels in the media, political and public life. International lobbying and dialogue with the aim of encouraging the protection of all citizens from harm regardless of their sexuality.
Photos: Courtesy Kaleidoscope
Top: Speaker the House of Commons, theRt. Hon. John Bercow MP
Bottom: Founder: Bisi Alimi