Pride at work. Pride in our union.

Ireland has played a leadership role in promoting the rights of the LGBTI+ community in recent years but recent events in Waterford and Dublin illustrate that homophobia still persists and we cannot be complacent.

In the run up to this year’s virtual Pride Parade Congress General Secretary, Patricia King, said that these events serve as a reminder of the importance of Pride and to wish all members a safe, happy and enjoyable Pride. Congress also wishes to acknowledge that while all of us have faced challenges during the Pandemic, it has posed a greater risk to marginalised and vulnerable groups, including LGBTI people.

Surveys by LGBT Ireland and BelongTo have illustrated that 93% of LGBTI+ young people struggled with anxiety, stress, or depression during the Covid-19 restrictions, compared to 53% of the general youth population. Many are confined to unsupportive home environments due to public health restrictions and more than half (56%) of LGBTI+ young people surveyed in 2021 said they were not fully accepted in their home environment.

We wouldn’t tolerate discrimination in the work place — so why should we tolerate discrimination in society? SIPTU members and activists campaigning for Marriage Equality

The reports also highlight the struggles of LGBTI+ people who are additionally marginalised including LGBTI+ migrants, Traveller and Roma, refugees, older, living with a long-term disability, or other intersectional identities.

LGBT Ireland additionally point out that the LGBTI+ community rely on community spaces, social connections, and the ability to take pride in their identities, together — all denied to them by the Pandemic. Our movement stands for dignity, respect and equality in the workplace and wider society. We have a proud record in the fight against workplace discrimination and harassment, while also being the early supporters of marriage equality.

SIPTU Deputy General Secretary for Organising and Membership Development, Ethel Buckley said: “The roots of our support for the LGBTI+ community are deep and run hand in glove with our work in defending the low paid, fighting for better pay and seeking to improve the quality of life for all working people.”

“Our solidarity is an extension of our time-honoured tradition of organising and campaigning to win both bread and roses for all people across all communities. That is our collective struggle and one we are proud to share with all LGBTI+ activists across our movement.”

Liberty Hall roof will proudly light up in Pride colours this weekend as a symbol of our continued belief that our fortunes as working people rise and fall as one and and our continued solidarity with our LGBTI+ members.

SIPTU and INTO members on the Rosie Hackett Bridge with Liberty Hall lit up in Pride colours in February 2015
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