To mark National Coming Out Day (October 11), the National LGBT Federation (NXF) has called for the legislative equality that will provide a platform to eradicate homophobia, transphobia and discrimination, so that all LGBT people can live full, authentic lives.
Olivia McEvoy, Chair of the NXF, said, “National Coming Out Day celebrates ‘coming out’ and living open and honest lives as LGBT people and helps to inspire courage in those who want to but have yet to come out to their families and friends. It also provides an opportunity for us to express our solidarity with our LGBT brothers and sisters who live in countries where LGBT people are subjected to state sanctioned persecution and ‘coming out’ is a very dangerous option.
“We also need to recognise the clear link that exists between making it easier for LGBT people to ‘come out’ and the achievement of full legislative equality. Having ourselves and our relationships equally valued and recognised by the State, through a progressive Gender Recognition Bill and the opening up of civil marriage equality to same-sex couples, will not only confer important practical benefits, but will convey a hugely important and powerful message to society that LGBT people are full and equal citizens in Ireland.
“Likewise, repeal of Section 37.1 of the Employment Equality Act – state-sanctioned discrimination – will end the patently unjust situation where LGBT employees have to hide their true identities or risk being fired from their jobs. It is morally reprehensible that in a country so damaged by forcing its citizens to live lives of repression that we are still fostering a culture where LGBT people cannot be openly ‘out’ and celebratory about the love in their life. It is also vital that LGBT people can act as positive role models for young LGBT people embarking on their own journeys of self-discovery’.
”The NXF urges the key decision-makers in Ireland, including the electorate in Spring 2015, to pave the way for a society that celebrates diverse identities and empowers every LGBT person to ‘come out’ and live openly without fear.”
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