Inclusive education campaign receives first trade union donation from tanker drivers branch
THE Time for Inclusive Education campaign (Tie) has received a monetary contribution from the Unite tanker drivers branch.
Tie, which campaigns for a statutory education programme that presents a realistic and diverse picture of relationships and sexuality to secondary school pupils, said that it was “excited” that the tanker drivers branch had come on board.
Speaking to CommonSpace, a TIE spokesperson said: “Our campaign has received its first donation, with the offer of continued support, from Unite Petroleum branch SC/51/9.
“This branch looks after petrol tanker drivers – not exactly the first group we’d have expected to pledge their support to our campaign: we are excited that stereotypes are being broken down each day, and the hand of friendship that these trade unionists have shown us is an encouraging display of solidarity.”
The Tie campaign has been building momentum for several months, reaching out to social movements and civil society to help bring an end to the exclusion and discrimination faced by LGBT+ youth at school.
Thomas Conroy, chairperson of Unite Petroleum Branch SC/51/9 said: “Our branch are delighted to be the first to make a financial donation to the Time for Inclusive Education (Tie) campaign, with a pledge for ongoing support. We recognise the need for better, more inclusive education for LGBTI+ youth, and are aware of the shocking statistics regarding bullying, suicide, self-harm and feelings of exclusion that prevent many LGBTI+ children from achieving their full potential at school.
“We believe that the Tie campaign could play a pivotal role in eradicating homo/bi/transphobic attitudes and behaviours – not only in schools, but also in the workplace. Our branch is proud to be backing this campaign – which is fundamentally about protecting all of our children, and helping to shape a more inclusive, equal society for future generations.”
Conroy also said that trade unionists felt they had a duty to support the LGBTI+ community because of a history of mutual solidarity: “We are aware that the LGBTI+ community, via Lesbians & Gay Men Support the Miners, stood in solidarity with trade unionists in the 1980s throughout the miners’ strike – and we feel that it is now our turn to return that favour and stand shoulder to shoulder with them,” he said.
Cooperation between trade unionists and gay rights activists during the miners strike was celebrated in the film Pride.
The Tie campaign has gathered extensive evidence, submitted by students from across Scotland who have witnessed or personally experienced abuse or discrimination due to their sexuality, for a presentation it will make to the Scottish parliament on 27 October 2015.
Tickets for the presentation are free and can be found on the Scottish parliament website from 20 October. People wanting to submit evidence can send it to firstname.lastname@example.org .
Picture courtesy of Tie Campaign