In our first blog for LGBT+ History Month we’re celebrating the queer solidarity shown by partners in our No Pride In Detention campaign. 

No Pride In Detention calls for an end to the detention of LGBTQI+ people, who experience bullying, harassment and abuse while held in immigration detention. It’s an experience that has devastating consequences, but is so often overlooked or ignored – in part because detention only affects people subject to immigration control in the UK.  

That’s why it’s so inspiring to see LGBTQI+ groups and organisations across the country join forces to say that we won’t stand for anyone in our community being locked up and subjected to bullying and abuse. 

Our Executive Director Leila, Campaigns Advisory Group member Arthur Britney, and Manono who appeared in our campaign film discuss LGBTQI+ detention at a panel debate hosted by National Student Pride

The organisations that make up the coalition are a diverse group – from big charities to radio stations and poetry groups. What brings us together is a sense of solidarity with LGBTQI+ refugee communities. 

This LGBT+ History Month we want to showcase some of the amazing contributions these groups have made to the campaign. 

Starting with Sahir House, who hosted us in Liverpool for two days while we worked with them and Many Hands One Heart on a film exploring the experiences of lesbian women in immigration detention. 

A still from the campaign film we made with Sahir House and Many Hands One Heart

That film has enabled us to show LGBTQI+ audiences what detention is really like for those who are locked away. We have been honoured to screen it to the community in LGBTQI+ venues that are supporting the campaign, with events at the Ledward Centre in Brighton and London LGBTQ+ Community Centre. 

A film screening and discussion hosted by the London LGBTQ+ Community Centre

Other partners have joined in by taking the campaign to events – like Refugee Buddy Project campaigning at Hastings Pride and Trans Sober talking to the community at Brighton Trans Pride. And when it comes to influencing politicians, it is fantastic to have the backing of Stonewall, who included ending LGBTQI+ detention as one of their priorities for a new government in their Back On Track plan for LGBTQ+ equality in the UK. 

The Refugee Buddy Project take the campaign to Hastings Pride

Spurred on by the injustices at Larne House Short Term Holding Facility near Belfast – where more than 5,000 people have been detained since it opened in 2011 – the campaign is also supported by 5 groups in Northern Ireland. Here NI, Rainbow Refugees NI, and End Deportations Belfast have been supporting tirelessly on social media to keep the issue in people’s minds. 

If your group or organisation agrees that no LGBTQI+ person should be locked up indefinitely and subject to bullying and abuse, join us and become part of the movement to end LGBTQI+ detention. Check out the full list of organisations involved and sign you own group up today.

Together, we will win this!