The UK Government has today published the findings of the largest LGBT survey to date. More than 100,000 people took part in the survey which was carried out between July and October last year. The report found that 2/3 LGBT people fear holding their partners hand in public, In response to the findings the UK Government has published an LGBT Action Plan which includes a ban on conversion therapy and further action to tackle homophobic and transphobic hate crime.  

Speaking on the announcement John O’Doherty Director of The Rainbow Project said “The UK Government strategy demonstrates, once again, Stormont’s failure to address the inequalities experienced by LGBT people. Over the past 12 years consecutive Northern Ireland Governments have committed to the publication of a sexual orientation strategy but have consistently failed to do so. While the UK Government has engaged with LGBT people and are listening and responding to their needs, Stormont has consistently ignored our community. Northern Ireland continues to lag behind the rest of the UK and Ireland on equality legislation. While we welcome Arlene Fosters attendance at last week’s Pink News Summer Reception, the publication of this report evidences why we need action from Stormont not just words.

Responding to the findings Director of The Rainbow Project said “Some people will be shocked by the report, however for many LGBT people the results sadly will be recognisable. This data reminds us that while there has never been a better time to be LGBT in the United Kingdom that we have still much to achieve to ensure true equality for LGBT people.”


Welcoming the Governments LGBT Action Plan he said “While we welcome the publication of the action plan, we are unsure as to which of these actions will extend to Northern Ireland. The UK Government would like to reflect themselves internationally as leading on LGBT equality, however this does not reflect the experiences of LGBT people in Northern Ireland. While UK citizens are denied the right to marry in Northern Ireland and while more than half of LGBT young people don’t feel safe in schools – the UK Government is failing LGBT people. The legacy of criminalisation and discrimination perpetuated by UK governments over decades is still felt here in Northern Ireland and across the Common Wealth, and much more leadership is required from the UK Government here and across the world.”


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The Rainbow Project media information: John O’Doherty or Gavin Boyd 028 90319030

The full report is available here

The Action Plan is available here