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Bradford College hosts LGBT campaigner Peter Tatchell

Human rights campaigner Peter Tatchell visited Bradford College to talk to students about his half century of campaigning for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender rights.

The 65-year-old discussed his 50 years of activism, the strides taken forward towards equality and the battles still to be won.

It was his second visit to the college in three months, having delivered a talk on human rights in December to mark Human Rights Day.

“It was great to come back to Bradford College to talk to students,” said the veteran activist who has been the subject of 300 violent assaults, mainly from anti-gays and far right extremists.

“There were lots of great questions. I am sure the students left the lecture feeling better informed about LGBT issues and more than ever resolved to help tackle prejudice.

“Bradford is a great multicultural city but there are still communities where LGBT people are not understood and accepted. We need to work with faith communities to challenge all hate. United we are stronger.”

Mr Tatchell, who runs the Peter Tatchell Foundation, added: “We have made great progress in Britain on LGBT human rights, but there’s still more work to be done to tackle bullying and hate crime. There is also the ongoing ban on same sex marriage in Northern Ireland and the way LGBT refugees are often denied asylum.

“Globally, 73 out of 193 countries still criminalise same sex relations with penalties ranging up to life imprisonment and even execution. There is also an anti LGBT backlash in 15 or 20 countries like Russia, Brunei and Syria.

“But, overall the global trend is towards greater LGBT freedom. In recent years homosexuality has been decriminalised in Mozambique, Belize, Northern Cyprus and the Seychelles. Overall, queer freedom is an unstoppable global force.”

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