May 17 – International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia


“Mental Health and Well Being”

Source: Stonewall


Since 2005, May 17th has been dedicated to IDAHOT (International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia), marking the day in 1990 when the World Health Organisation removed homosexuality from its list of mental disorders.

In addition, Mental Health Awareness Week (16 – 22 May) in the UK, has the theme this year of relationships. Healthy relationships (with partners, colleagues, friends and families) are essential to maintaining good mental health and being LGBT should not be a barrier to this.

However, we know that one in five lesbian, gay and bi employees in the UK have experienced verbal bullying or harassment from colleagues, customers or service users on grounds of their sexual orientation in the last five years. When being gay is still illegal in 75 countries around the world there is still a lot of work to do to make sure that we remove all of the barriers, and improve the experiences of our LGBT colleagues, service users, students and communities.

Look out Stonewall’s Mental Health Briefing to get started.

We urge you to use today as an opportunity to connect with your staff and colleagues, communicate to them what you are actively doing to tackle homophobia, biphobia and transphobia at work and signpost to appropriate internal and external support services that they can all access. Above all – educate yourself, talk to your colleagues and gain a better understanding of their situation.

How to use the IDAHOT day effectively

Tell your staff what you are doing! You’re all doing some fantastic work, share it and make sure that staff know of the steps you’re taking to tackle homophobia, biphobia and transphobia at work.

Let them know how to access support. Whether this is through your network group, a local support service or initiative, keep your staff informed and up to date with how to make sure their mental health and wellbeing is a positive experience.

Share some resources. Stonewall have got some fantastic resources that are free for you to access, why not share:

  • Stonewall’s Information Line service is free for all to access – why not circulate this to your staff with your own message on internal support mechanisms too?
  • Stonewall’s Workplace Bullying Guide and Line Managers Guide – why not share these with your line managers, and make sure they are confident to deal with issues relating to sexual orientation and gender identity at work?
  • Trans Resources – why not take a look at the new guide on Communicating your Commitment to Trans Inclusion and check you’re on track?


Read More about what Human Rights at Sea is doing in support of the LGBT+ maritime community


LGBT+ at Sea


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