Update: sport; events; social media; study/work abroad

Highlights from recent meetings

LGBT Staff Network logo

The following are highlights from the last Steering Group and full Network meetings. Full details are available in the minutes of both meetings, which are kept on Moodle (the Network minutes will be uploaded shortly).


Professor Andy Smith and Nathalie Noret spoke about their work on a research project funded by the Ben Cohen StandUp Foundation. They will analyse schools-based data about the prevalence of homophobic bullying in sport, with the intention of developing guidance on intervention.

Andy is keen for the Haxby Road sports site to be an inclusive space and would welcome your ideas on how to go about this, whether it’s through specific events, offering space to external groups such as the Yorkshire Terriers (a gay football team), or something completely different. We could use funding from Sports England to develop non-competitive sport for wellbeing. For more information, contact Andy (a.smith@yorksj.ac.uk).


Planning for Campus North, World AIDS Day and York LGBT History Month are all well under way, and we’re organising joint events with the University of York on international issues (see the item below). We will also mark the following days in 2015:

  • Day of Silence (17 April);
  • International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia (17 May);
  • York Pride (20 June);
  • National Coming Out Day (11 October).

In addition, we are looking to hold two discussion events, perhaps in the form of Question Time, and a series of film screenings (internally). One of the discussion events would would look at faith, spirituality and LGBT issues, and the other would be a party political debate leading up to the general and local elections. If you’re interested in getting involved, contact Andy.

Social media

It was agreed that the LGBT Staff Network should expand into social media, so we now have a Twitter account (@ysjulgbtstaff) and a Facebook group.

Study/work abroad events – volunteers needed

LGBT Staff Network and University of York logos

We’re planning two joint events with the University of York that will explore issues for LGBT people with regards to study and work abroad. In particular, the event will aim to explore the issues surrounding studying or working in countries where LGBT rights are minimal or non-existent. It will also look at issues faced by international LGBT students who come here to study.

If you would be interested in helping to organise these events (including agreeing the format and speakers), contact Andy.

Meetings for the upcoming year

LGBT Staff Network logo

Dates, times and locations of LGBT Staff Network meetings for the upcoming year are outlined below.

Members are also welcome to attend meetings of the Steering Group, which have more of a focus on planning the work of the Network than open discussion. Steering Group meetings are scheduled for November, January, March, May and September. For more information, contact Andy.

Tuesday 9 December 12:30-13:30 DG/109
Monday 23 February 2015 15:00-16:00 DG/126
Tuesday 28 April 2015 15:30-16:30 QE/106
Wednesday 14 October 2015* 15:00-16:30 TBC

* second birthday party

Reminder: Campus North meeting at York St John University

Campus North

The next meeting of Campus North, the network of LGBT staff networks in northern higher education institutions, is to take place here 12:00-16:00 on Wednesday 5 November. Tentative items for discussion include community engagement, access to health care and data protection. The first will be led by Stonewall, and the second and third will hopefully be led by Action for Trans Health.

If you are interested in attending, contact Andy.

Reminder: Stonewall staff survey

Stonewall Diversity Champion

Stonewall would like to hear from all our employees on their experiences in the workplace. This year, for the first time, the questionnaire is open to heterosexual as well as lesbian, gay and bi staff.

The survey will only take a few minutes to complete and is entirely anonymous. The information you provide will go to Stonewall’s Workplace team, not to York St John University, and once collected and analysed, only average scores will be shared with the us.

The deadline for responses is 17:00 on Saturday 15 November. To participate, visit Stonewall’s survey page and input the name of the university and 761 as the three digit code.

Social media networking event

Aviva logo

Aviva are holding a free social media networking event at their offices on Wellington Row in York at 18:00 on Tuesday 28 October. The event is jointly organised by the York divisions of Aviva Women’s Network and Aviva Pride.

The event will focus on social media and include three short presentations from Aviva experts, detailed below, a question and answer session with the panel, and a networking session with wine and nibbles.

The digital shadow Russell Ellis, Global Social Media Manager
Maximising your online professional profile Iain Everett, Recruitment Operations Manager
Social media and safety – is equality going backwards? Ceri Connolly, HR Director, UK&I Life

To book, visit the registration survey. For more information, contact Lauren Peel, the York Network Lead for Aviva Pride (lauren.peel@aviva.co.uk).

Play based on the life of Anne Lister

HLGBT Performing Arts York have produced a play in the form of a modern re-enactment of Anne Lister’s life, reflecting the present day lesbian community of Yorkshire. Anne Lister was openly lesbian in Yorkshire during the 18th and 19th centuries. More details about her can be found in the BBC article The life and loves of Shibden Hall’s Anne Lister. The play is to take place at 19:00 on Wednesday 19 November at Monroe’s Showbar, and will be followed by a short question and answer session by Helena Whitbread, Lister’s biographer.

Ynda Jas

Founding Secretary of the LGBT Staff Network and former Equality Champion for Registry, where I was based in the Academic Quality Support team. Also founder of York LGBTQ+ History and Non-binary London, and DJ coordinator at Bar Wotever, an iconic weekly queer cabaret event. They/them.

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