Local authorities play a key role in tackling homophobic, biphobic and transphobic (HBT) bullying and supporting LGBT young people in their communities. They have a duty to ensure the safety and welfare of all children in their community. They are also uniquely placed to provide support and guidance to schools and youth services.
Stonewall works with local authorities through the Education Champions programme, providing them with bespoke support and advice.
Why is it important?
- Local authorities play a strong strategic role working with schools, parents, families and vulnerable pupils to ensure children and young people’s safety, fair access and improved school performance, all of which can be affected by bullying.
- HBT bullying affects all pupils. Nine in ten secondary and two in five primary school teachers say young people, regardless of their sexual orientation, experience homophobic bullying, name calling or harassment (The Teachers' Report 2014).
- Bullying affects pupils’ attendance, attainment and future prospects.
- Public bodies are legally required to take proactive action. The Equality Act 2010 places a legal duty on all public bodies, including local authorities and schools, to take a proactive role in tackling HBT bullying and protecting those who might be experiencing it.
- Ofsted inspectors judge the work schools do to prevent and tackle prejudice-based bullying and language, including HBT bullying and language.
- Ofsted inspections look at how the local authority supports schools to prevent and tackle bullying.