Later this month, the fourth annual PinkNews Awards and will take place at the Speaker’s House and One Great George Street – here is your chance to vote for the winners.
The PinkNews Awards will celebrate the contributions of politicians, businesses and community groups towards what has been another historic year for LGBT equality in the UK and around the world.
The event – which is being generously supported by Lloyds Banking Group and Hogan Lovells will be held in the Speaker’s House and One Great George Street, will feature an array of high-profile politicians and community leaders.
Speakers will include the Leader of the Labour Party Jeremy Corbyn, the Education Secretary and Minister for Women and Equalities Justine Greening, Communities Secretary Sajid Javid, Scottish Secretary David Mundell, Shadow Home Secretary Diane Abbott, Scottish Labour Leader Kezia Dugdale and the Deputy Leader of the SNP Angus Robertson.
Below is the list of nominees for this year’s PinkNews Awards – set to take place October 26.
Some the categories are jointly decided by reader’s votes and a judging panel which comprises of all of the main political parties, business leaders and community activists.
Member of the Year presented by Hogan Lovells
Kezia Dugdale MSP
The Scottish Labour leader has become the fourth of the six main party leaders in Scotland to announce that they are LGBT. Kezia came out in a ‘matter of fact’ way in an interview that was welcomed across Scotland and the rest of the UK for its frankness. Since coming out, Kezia has continued to advocate for LGBT rights, acting as a role model for many young LGBT people in Scotland. She has announced her engagement to long-term partner Louise Riddell. Like her Conservative counterpart, Ruth Davidson, Kezia appeared with her partner Louise on the election day, posing for the traditional photographs outside her local polling station.
Mike Freer MP
Conservative MP for Finchley and Golders Green Mike Freer has been a long-time campaigner on a number of LGBT+ issues. A married gay man, Mr Freer campaigned for gay male teenagers to be offered the HPV vaccination. He also called for poppers to be removed from a blanket Government ban on ‘legal highs’. More recently, Mr Freer challenged NHS England on its decision not to fund HIV-preventing PrEP drugs, saying it had been “stirred up by tabloids” and “proceeded to put one set of patients up against another.” Earlier this year, Mike secured an important Westminster Hall debate on the prevalence of ‘gay cure’ therapies in the UK and called for action by the government to eradicate them.
Rt Hon Nicky Morgan MP
Since changing her position on same-sex marriage in 2014, Conservative MP Mrs Morgan built bridges with the LGBT community as Education Secretary and Minister for Women and Equalities. At the PinkNews Awards 2014, Mrs Morgan announced a new fund to tackle homophobic, biphobic and transphobic bullying in schools. At last year’s PinkNews Awards, Nicky called for gay ‘cure’ therapies to be “stamped out”. Since being removed from her role in the cabinet, Mrs Morgan has continued to raise issues relating to LGBT rights, including making it clear that she believes that changes are needed to make sex and relationship education fully LGBT inclusive.
Cat Smith MP
Labour MP Cat Smith was elected to the Lancaster and Fleetwood seat in the 2015 election. Within four months, Ms Smith had been appointed to Jeremy Corbyn’s front bench team as the shadow minister for equalities and is now in the shadow cabinet as Shadow Minister for Voter Engagement and Youth Affairs. Last year, following the death of a transgender woman in a men’s prison, Ms Smith secured a debate on the issue of transgender people in prisons. At a time when bisexuality too often has a visibility issue within the wider LGBT community, Cat stands out as a high profile person who is proud to share that they are bisexual.
John Nicolson MP
First known to the public as a radio and television news presenter, John was elected as the SNP’s Member of Parliament for East Dunbartonshire John Nicolson last year. John has announced that having secured the ballot for a private member’s bill, he will attempt to legislate for a mass pardoning of those, alive and deceased, who were convicted of historic gay sex offences, that would not be illegal now. Mr Nicolson was highly critical of the BBC’s decision to nominate homophobic boxer Tyson Fury for its Sports Personality of the Year award. Earlier this year, he spoke in the House on the day after the Orlando Pulse shooting to say the “unimaginable horror” shows “how far we still have to go” for LGBT+ rights.
Peer of the Year
Rt Hon Baroness Anelay DBE
The Human Rights Minister generously acted as the host for last year’s PinkNews Awards, which were held in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. This year, Baroness Anelay has continued to champion LGBT rights as part of her human rights brief. In an interview with PinkNews, she compared ‘gay cure’ therapies to torture and called for the practice to stop around the world. Through her leadership, the FCO was able to assist the government of the Seychelles to act to decriminalise homosexuality- proving the value of human rights diplomacy
Lord Black of Brentwood
The executive director of the Telegraph Media Group, Guy Black has continued to use his seat in the House of Lords to raise significant issues relating to LGBT rights. Over the past year, Guy has continued his long standing campaign to outlaw reparative, so called ‘gay cure’ therapy. This year, Guy has also turned his attention to HIV prevention and treatment, along with decriminalisation efforts around the world.
Lord Collins of Highbury
Former union leader, Lord Collins is a strong advocate for LGBT rights both inside and outside of the House of Lords. Over the past year, he has raised issues relating to sexual health, sexual violence and the LGBT community in Iraq which faces significant attacks due to ISIS.
Former police chief Brian Paddick has continued to use his peerage to raise issues relating to the LGBT community. In particular this year, Brian has raised awareness of concerns within the LGBT community relating to the Investigatory Powers Bill.
Boy Meets Girl (BBC 3)
Gay Bombay (BBC Radio 4)
Good Morning Britain (ITV)
The Victoria Derbyshire Show (BBC 2)
Unreported World (Channel 4)
Advertising Campaign of the Year
He Said Yes (Lloyds Bank)
#NoFilter (Pride in London)
Watch the ads below:
Community Group of the Year
Corporate Equality Award
Lloyds Banking Group
Lloyds Banking Group has been included as a nominee despite the fact that it is a sponsor of this year’s awards due to the enormous efforts that the company has undertaken to improve LGBT equality over the past year.
This year, Lloyds Banking Group became the first major UK owned employer to offer gender reassignment treatment and surgery as a benefit in its health care policy offered to all employees across Lloyds Bank, Halifax, Bank of Scotland, Scottish Widows and its other UK owned businesses. The ground-breaking policy has already helped a number of its staff to access treatment significantly faster than they would have been able to via the NHS. The organisation is now helping other large employers work through changes in their own health policies to make them more inclusive for transgender employees. Lloyds Bank has also undertaken a widespread LGBT-inclusive advertising campaign called ‘He Said Yes’, featuring a same-sex proposal as an example of a life event that the bank says it will support customers through.
Facebook has continued to innovate to allow its users to show to solidarity with the LGBT community through its platform. In the past year, this has been demonstrated by the social network’s response to the devastating attack on the Pulse nightclub in Orlando. Using a tool created by Facebook, millions of users changed their social media profiles to show their support for the LGBT community in Florida.
In an industry that is often considered to be rather “blokey”, InterEngineering has carved out a niche for LGBT engineers. Over the past year, the organisation has grown in size and stature and has held a large number of events on a variety of diverse topics.
Google continues to be an inclusive place for LGBT people to work and for LGBT people to use the products of. This year, for millions of people around the globe who can’t get to or don’t live near a Pride celebration, Google unveiled #Prideforeveryone.
A virtual experience allowing users to tune into various Pride events is designed to be viewed on YouTube 360 and Google Cardboard using a smartphone. For many people who live in countries where being LGBT is a crime, this provided a look into a world where love is not a crime.
Founded in 2011, Freehold is a network set up exclusively for the real estate industry and its members include building surveyors, valuation surveyors, agency surveyors, asset managers, architects, developers, investors and property lawyers from both the public and the private sector. Over the past year it has continued to stage regular events bringing together LGBT people from across the profession.
Public Sector Award
The British Army
As predicted by Chief of Defence Personnel Andrew Gregory last year in an interview with PinkNews, the Army recently allowed the first trans woman to serve on the front line. An army sergeant and his partner recently became the first gay couple to marry on a British military base overseas.
Director General Robert Hannigan apologised for the GCHQ’s treatment of past LGBT employees at the Stonewall Workplace Conference.
Hannigan addressed the historic mistreatment of LGBT people, and paid tribute to the late Alan Turing and a former member of staff who was dismissed in the 1960s. He apologised to all those who were unfairly dismissed, recognising the amount of talent the country lost.
The Metropolitan Police has relaunched its LGBT network this year, and bolstered engagement with the LGBT community in the wake of the Orlando massacre.
Transport for London
TfL once again decorated a number of its vehicles – including a bus, taxi and DLR train – in rainbow colours to celebrate Pride across the UK.
The winners will be announced at the PinkNews Awards next week – October 26.
The PinkNews Awards is headlined sponsored by Lloyds Banking Group.