Mayoral candidates, government ministers, students and academics and national and international LGBT campaigners are all gearing up for the launch of International Day Against Homophobia (IDAHO-UK 2008), which take place at the London College of Fashion on March 13th.

A message of support for the IDAHO campaign will be read on behalf of incumbent Mayor Ken Livingstone. Mayor of London. Richard Barnes the Conservative Leader on the London Assembly, Brian Paddick, Liberal Democrat candidate for Mayor, and Sian Berry, the Green candidate will also be speaking.

Students on the Design for Graphic Communication course at the University of Arts, London have designed double sided broadsheet posters to encourage UK campaigners to arrange events for the International Day Against Homophobia on May 17th, and the winning posters will be displayed at the event.

David Lammy, Minister for Skills and MP for Tottenham will be handing out the prizes to the students and making a speech at the event. He is joined by Minister for Equality, Barbara Follett, and Linda Bellos, former leader of Lambeth Council, who works on mainstreaming equality and diversity in the British Army and Metropolitan Police.

Louis-Georges Tin, the founder of IDAHO will explain the priorities of the 2008 campaign, Pastor Kiyimba Brown will describe how he set up an IDAHO Chapter in Uganda, Ali Hilli founder of Iraqi LGBT will highlight the gravity of the situation for LGBT activists in Iraq, and Bill Schiller of the International Lesbian and Gay Cultural Network will graphically describe the plight of the LGBT community in Belarus.

Amnesty International will also be represented. Niranjan Kamatlkar, Artistic Director of Wise Thoughts will look at creative ways to address homophobia and transphobia in the UK, and a representative from the East London Out Project will talk on the theme of the IDAHO campaign this year “Lesbian Rights and Sexism”.

Finally, Sue Sanders will display the work undertaken by students for Schools Out and LGBT History Month.

Organiser Derek Lennard told PinkNews.co.uk: “We hope this event will be inspiring, thought provoking and enjoyable and inspire campaigners to plan events for IDAHO.”