21 March 2014

Stonewall: There can be No Bystanders in fight to tackle bullying and abuse

Stonewall’s Equality Dinner, sponsored by Aviva, raises £395,000
Hard-hitting film launched today challenges people to ‘Hear It. Stop It.

Stonewall last night raised a record-breaking £395,000 at its annual Equality Dinner, sponsored by Aviva. Money raised from the night will support Stonewall’s education work and tackling homophobia wherever it exists.

The night marked Stonewall’s 25th anniversary, with speeches from presenter, broadcaster and writer Sue Perkins and journalist and Stonewall founder, Matthew Parris. Both emphasised that while there was much to celebrate, there was still much to do.

The Dinner also saw the launch of Stonewall’s No Bystanders campaign, with a 60 second film. The hard-hitting and powerful film demonstrates that, unchecked, the abusive language children learn in the playground stays with them into adulthood. It encourages people – including gay people – to check their own language, and pledge not to be a bystander whenever they hear it from others.

In support of the campaign Stonewall co-founder Sir Ian McKellen, who also lends his voice to the film, said: ‘Abuse ruins people’s lives. We all have a responsibility to take a stand and put a stop to it. By making sure that bullying is reported and prejudice is challenged, we can help ensure that every person in Britain lives free from fear of persecution and violence.’

Ruth Hunt, Stonewall’s Acting Chief Executive said: ‘This powerful film starkly shows how easily prejudice and bullying can escalate from playground teasing to grown-up violence. No one can afford to be a bystander to this bullying and that is why we are calling on people to make the pledge: hear it, stop it. ’

The No Bystanders film and pledge can be found at: www.nobystanders.org.uk

ends

Enquiries: James Taylor, Head of Policy, on 020 7593 2829 or 07985 439 660

Notes:

  • Stonewall is the lesbian, gay and bisexual charity: www.stonewall.org.uk 
  • One in six lesbian, gay and bisexual people have experienced a homophobic hate crime or incident over the last three years.
  • Insults, intimidation and harassment are the most common homophobic hate crimes and incidents, affecting more than one in four (27 per cent) lesbian, gay and bisexual people in the last three years. (Homophobic Hate Crime – The Gay British Crime Survey 2013, Stonewall)
  • 96 per cent of lesbian, gay and bisexual pupils hear anti-gay remarks such as ‘poof’ and ‘lezza’ used in school. (The School Report – The experiences of gay young people in Britain’s schools in 2012, Stonewall)
  • Campaign and film created and produced by The Gate London: www.thegateworldwide.com and Joanna Bailey and Bare films: www.barefilms.co.uk 
  • Stonewall would like to thank all the creators, actors and technicians who gave their time for free or at greatly reduced rates in support of the campaign.

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