De Montfort University Leicester (DMU) launched its annual #DMUpride festival today, to mark the start of a month-long event celebrating our LGBT community.
The launch was held in the newly refurbished Campus Centre between 12-2 where dozens of #DMUpride t-shirts were given out to students.
There were also stalls run by De Montfort Students’ Union’s own LGBT+ society, UAVA (United Against Violence & Abuse), Leicester City Clinical Commissioning group, The Carers Centre, TRADE and Fire Rescue LGBT Network Shout!
While a tie-dyeing stall customising #DMUpride t-shirts proved to be incredibly popular.
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The annual event comes as DMU is celebrating climbing further up the annual Stonewall Top 100 workplace equality index to 39th position, up 19 places on last year. It means DMU is the highest-placed English university in the table, confirming the university’s commitment to ensure everyone on campus has the freedom to be who they want to be.
DMU Chief Operating Officer Ben Browne launched the month-long festival saying: “#DMUpride is a celebration of LGBT life today through art, culture, sport, faith, sexuality and fun but it also explores more challenging issues such as mental health and sharing real life stories.
“#DMUpride is not just a slogan, it is about making active, positive statements about our values, like our sports team wearing their special #DMUpride kits.
“DMU recognises that the provision of a great student experience can only be achieved in a warm, welcoming and reassuring place for all.”
Co-chairperson of the DMU LGBT+ society, Nikki Payne, said: “DMU pride is so important in order to help teach people about the LGBT+ community. Without the society, I wouldn’t have learnt a lot about myself.
“DMU is the first I know of that holds a university specific pride and this year it is better than ever with even more student input and great opportunities to get involved.”
Throughout the month, students can get involved in #DMUpride Sports Day, watch LGBT+ film screenings or attend comedy sessions.
There are also drop-in sessions during the month. One of the sessions is organised by LGBT+’s society’s Men’s Officer, Jonathan Farr. He said: “These events are essential as it gives people a chance to talk about what they are going through, in a safe, non-judgemental environment.”
Second year Creative Writing and Film Studies student, Elle Knaggs, said: “It’s important for people to understand that being LGBT doesn’t just mean homosexual. An event like #DMUpride helps to educate people and make them more aware of the LGBT+ community.”
Posted on Monday 6th February 2017