Updated: Apr 2
ReportOUT regrets to announce that it will be withdrawing all of its support for the Safe To Be Me conference. We were due to display our photographs from our own Flag in the Map Project, a joint project with the Gilbert Baker Foundation, at the Safe To Be Me conference venue. We will be withdrawing this offer in light of recent events.
Yesterday’s leaked announcement, which revealed the U.K. Government plans to scrap the planned conversion therapy ban, then to later U-turn on this decision and offer a proposed partial ban, which excludes trans people from it, is utterly reprehensible.
We are deeply disappointed in this decision and as such, it has led us to withdraw our support. We are not broken, and we do not need to be ‘fixed.’
The U.K. Government have repeatedly assured LGBTQI+ organisations that the full ban on conversion therapy would go ahead. In fact, the very findings of the UK Government’s own National LGBT Survey and LGBT Action Plan found that 7% of LGBTQI+ people have been offered, or have undergone conversion therapy, and that 13% of trans people have been offered, or have undergone conversion therapy.
ReportOUT know that conversion therapy in any form, is a brutal, archaic, unproven, and deeply-harmful practice, with long-term and detrimental mental health effects.
The decision to allow a partial ban is an absolute violation of the basic human rights of trans people in the U.K. In light of the UN Declaration of Human Rights, of which the U.K. has signed and ratified, ReportOUT would like to remind the U.K. Government of its own obligations to itself, and to the rest of the world:
Article 3: We all have the right to life, and to live in freedom and safety.
Article 5: No one has the right to inflict torture, or to subject anyone else to cruel or inhuman treatment.
Article 7: The law is the same for everyone and must treat us all equally.
We would also like to remind the U.K. Government that the first ever global LGBTQI+ conference in the U.K. should be a moment to stand in solidarity with LGBTQI+ people everywhere, and to highlight the U.K as a place which strives to be inclusive, representative, fair, and equal. If the U.K. Government cannot support all LGBTQI+ rights, then it should reconsider this conference and the message it presents on the global stage.
ReportOUT will continue to fully support the work of the Equal Rights Coalition. We remain deeply and passionately committed to a future whereby the human rights of all LGBTQI+ people are included.
Should the U.K. Government see sense and ensure that the ban applies to all of our community, including trans people, then we will welcome dialogue. Until then, the conference will be a symbol of a place which is NOT Safe To Be Me.
The Trustees of ReportOUT, the Gilbert Baker Foundation, and Monica Helms, Gilbert Baker Foundation Board and Creator of the Trans Flag