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on 17 Nov 2019 7:30 PM

Cork's Gay Project have today launched two policy papers on how to make Cork the best place to be LGBT. Gay Project Chair, Colette Finn said Cork had taken the lead in breaking down the prejudices about LGBT+ and that work would continue."We need to allow people agency to become whomever they want. Based on the principles of respect and equality we can make Cork a brilliant place to be LGBT+."

Gay Project Coordinator Padraig Rice said the 'Making Cork the Best Place to be LGBT' project was an ambitious goal. "By working together we can do it. To get there we need hate crime legislation to prevent attacks, a ban on bogus conversion therapy and full and equal family rights' He added: "Locally we need a gay men's sexual health service to improve health outcomes. An LGBT Equality Hub that will act as a thriving community centre. Greater LGBT visibility and awareness and for an LGBT lens to be applied to all citywide policy-making and strategy formation."

He also suggested 'Making Cork the Best Place to be LGBT' will have significant social and economic gains. "A safer city means more tourists, more investment and more jobs. Its also means people can live their best lives possible - that is our ultimate aspiration. "Since the last local elections in 2014 we have achieved significant social change for the LGBT community. We fought and won the civil right to marry and the right to legally change your gender. Ireland is now seen globally as a beacon of hope for LGBT people. However, we still have a way to go."

In 2018, ILGA Europe and the Gay Travel Index ranked Ireland 15th in terms of LGBT human rights and policy protections. Mr Rice went on: "With the local elections on the horizon, we have put together five achievable proposals that if implemented by the new Cork City Council would make Cork the best place in the world to be LGBT. It's an ambitious goal - but we think Cork can do it!'

The Gay Project is a charity and NGO that supports gay, bi and trans people. It celebrates gender and sexual diversity and campaigns for LGBTQ human rights and policy protections. The two policy papers were launched. One with a local focus and one with a national focus. This article was originally published in the Evening Echo and can be sourced by following this link: https://bit.ly/37dJvbC