Katoomba residents to celebrate IDAHOT
Blue Mountains residents will be encouraged to show their support for IDAHOT (International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia) when the Blue Mountains City Council holds a commemoration and flag raising ceremony on May 17.
The commemoration and flag raising will be followed by entertainment and speeches at Carrington Square. The Katoomba IDAHOT organisers say everyone is welcome to the event, which they hope will spread a message of inclusion.
Councillor Romola Hollywood, IDAHOT organising committee member, said, “At the heart of our Blue Mountains community are values of respect and inclusion of all people. IDAHOT is an important time for the Council to show leadership and say no to homophobia and transphobia."
This is the fifth year the Blue Mountains City Council has supported an IDAHOT event. Organisers suggest the event provides local community members with an opportunity to show their support for the LGBTI community ans stand against discrimination and homophobia.
Organising committee member Kay Bazley said, “Although we like to think Australia is more enlightened, research confirms that young and old still suffer from bullying and discrimination. Suicide rates are still unacceptably high. IDAHOT is an opportunity for all of the community to stand alongside us and say that all people deserve to be treated with respect and dignity, regardless of who they love."
The International Day Against Homophobia (IDAHO) began as a grassroots event in Canada in 1991 to highlight how homophobia has impacted the lives of lesbian and gay people around the globe. The name was changed to IDAHOT to acknowledge and include the increasing instances of transphobia and draw attention to the issues of transgender people.
Image; A colourful celebration of diversity bythe Blue Mountains community for IDAHO 2013. (supplied)