LGBT spotlight will be shining on Fife

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Fife will host a series of events aimed at promoting equality and understanding the needs of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community.

Equalities charity Pink Saltire is teaming up with Fife Pride organisers to host the ‘Fife Rainbow Lunch’ and a Pride Open Day.

And national equalities organisation Equality Network has chosen Fife to launch its new engagement campaign ‘Further Out’. It will host two events in the Kingdom and is invited the whole community to get involved.

Events start on Monday, with a street stall in Kirkcaldy High Street in the morning, hosted by Equality Network, highlighting what life is like for LGBT+ people who live outside of the cities.

On Monday afternoon, Kirkcaldy Town House hosts Pink Saltire’s Fife Rainbow Lunch from noon. The free event is open to all, and will feature Jordan Daly, the co-founder of the TIE campaign (Time for Inclusive Education), speaking in Fife for the first time.

There will also be a chance to review some of the work in Fife over the past 12 months as well as plan for the year ahead.

Stuart Duffy, founder of Pink Saltire, said: “The TIE campaign has been one of the most widely supported public campaigns in Scotland over the past few years and we’re delighted Jordan will be speaking here in Fife.

“The work to tackle abuse and discrimination of LGBT young people in schools is progressing very well, with many schools starting their own groups or clubs over the past 12 months.

“This event will be a great opportunity for the whole community to share what is working well and what we need to improve on – plus there’s a free lunch too!”

From 7pm, activities move to Glenrothes where Equality Network hosts its first ‘Further Out’ community reception at Rothes Halls.

The event will bring LGBTI people and organisations together to share experiences.

Scott Cuthbertson, of Equality Network, said: “We know through our research that LGBTI people in more rural and island parts of Scotland report a significantly worse experience than those living in urban areas, including more prejudice, greater isolation, and less access to local services that meet their needs.

“That’s why we’re holding street stalls and events all over the country to better understand LGBTI experiences outside our biggest cities and what can be done to that those further out don’t face barriers due to their sexual orientation, gender identity or sex characteristics.

“We’ll be at 50 locations across Scotland, and it’s all starting in Fife on Monday.”

On Wednesday, March 29, the new Fife Pride organisation will host an open day at Adam Smith Theatre, Kirkcaldy, from 4pm to 7pm.

It hopes to attract volunteers, stall holders, street vendors and performers for Fife’s first Pride festival later this year.

Organisers have attracted over £5000 from Fife Council. Together with partners at Fife Centre for Equalities, Fife Council CLD Service and Fife Cultural Trust, the open day will be a chance to meet the team behind Pride and to get involved.

Richard McArthur, of Fife Pride, said: “We’re really excited about creating our very own Pride here in Fife in the summer.

“Plans are really coming together and its fantastic to have Fife Council behind us. Now it’s time for people to step forward if they’d like to take part – we’ll need parade stewards, backstage crew, transport guides and lots of helpers on the day to make the event a success.

“We’re also looking for stallholders, businesses, food and drink vendors and, of course, performers too.

“The Open Day will be a great chance to come and have a chat and give up a few hours in July for a great cause.”

Tickets for next week’s events can be booked at the EventBrite website – search for ‘Fife Rainbow Lunch’ and ‘Further Out Glenrothes’.

The Pride Open Day is a free drop-in event, so no tickets are required.