For the next two weeks people across the country will be confronted with a positive message about gay people from 600 billboards.
The advertising space in England, Scotland and Wales has been donated to gay equality organisation Stonewall by Titan Outdoor Advertising Ltd.
The message – ‘Some people are gay. Get over it!’ – will be displayed in giant, tabloid-style capital letters, on a bright red background.
The campaign, originally designed for schools, was developed in collaboration with 150 secondary school pupils and teachers for Stonewall.
In November 2007 it was launched by television actor John Barrowman as part of Stonewall’s Education for All campaign to tackle homophobic bullying in schools.
The posters, stickers and postcards, distributed to all 5,000 secondary schools across England, were so well-received by pupils and teachers that the message has gone beyond the school gates.
Ben Summerskill, Stonewall chief executive, told PinkNews.co.uk:
“Homophobia is almost endemic in our schools and blights the lives of people throughout society.
“It makes sense that this zero-tolerance message should be extended to the wider public.
“Across urban and rural Britain, this plain-speaking slogan will remind people that discrimination against gay men and lesbians is no longer acceptable.”
The posters will appear on billboards for two weeks from today.
Last June Stonewall published a wide-ranging study into homophobic bullying entitled The School Report.
It revealed that nearly two thirds of LGB students reported instances of homopbobic harassment.
That figure jumps to 75% of young gay people attending faith schools.
The survey of more than 1,100 young people found that only 23% of all UK schools explicitly condemn homophobic bullying.
92% of gay, lesbian and bisexual pupils have experienced verbal abuse, 41% physical bullying and 17% have been subject to death threats.
30% of pupils reported that adults have been responsible for incidents of homophobic bullying in their schools.
Nearly every interviewed student had heard phrases like, ‘You’re so gay’, and remarks like ‘poof’ and ‘dyke’ in UK schools.