National LGBTQ+ health and wellbeing charity LGBT Foundation welcomes the findings of the LGBT Veterans Review, expected to be published today, and urges for the recommendations to be implemented at pace to ensure reparations for LGBTQ+ veterans affected by the historic illegal ban on homosexuality in the UK Armed Forces.
The charity asks the Government to carefully consider the review findings, understand the profound and lasting impact of systemic homophobia, biphobia and transphobia on LGBTQ+ people of all backgrounds, and renew efforts to remove inequalities to improve the well-being of our communities, so people can reach their full potential.
Dr Carl Austin-Behan, an RAF veteran who was discharged because he is gay said: “I hope Lord Etherton’s report is a catalyst for change in which all LGBT veterans can thrive and appreciate the joy of being once again proud of their Service.”
On the review, LGBT Foundation Trustee Dr Mike Hill, who served in the Royal Navy since shortly after the ban was lifted said: “Having seen the toxic culture when I first joined, which undoubtedly negatively impacted on me and others, I have the utmost respect for the Service of those who worked under the ban. I have seen first-hand the positive changes that have occurred in the military since the lifting of the ban, which is more effective due to greater diversity and inclusion. Despite this, we must work to ensure reparations for all who were affected by the ban.”
“We stand alongside our partner organisations and with our LGBTQ+ veterans and military community through our armed forces Operation Equality programme. We are working to bring this community together in celebration of queer hope and joy as we collectively work to tackle the ongoing impact that the ban continues to have today.”
LGBT Foundation is inviting those affected by the review and the findings to contact their helpline on 0345 3 30 30 30.
Operation Equality is a national programme of wellbeing support and activities for LGBTQ+ veterans, service personnel and their families working to reduce isolation and loneliness within the community.
To find more information about Operation Equality, email firstname.lastname@example.org.