Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual And Transgendered Voters Set To Make Their Choice
2nd May, 20100 Comments
With the next general election just around the corner and the politicians fighting it out amongst themselves to win the support of the UK public, the commitment of each of the main parties to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered (LGBT) rights have, of course, come to the fore. While Prime Minister Gordon Brown and Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg both look set to win the votes of the gay community, the Conservative Party, in the form of Shadow Home Secretary Chris Grayling and Shadow Defence Minister Dr Julian Lewis, has rather shot itself in the foot and is trailing considerably according to recent pre-election polls. Mr Grayling’s comments that bed and breakfast owners should have the right to ban gay couples from their establishments, as well as Dr Lewis’ suggestion that the equal age of consent has led to an increased HIV risk, have done nothing to endear LGBT voters to the Tories.
With cases such as the recent arrest of three girls in Kentucky, USA for the attempted murder of a lesbian classmate still hitting the news headlines, the LGBT population are, quite understandably, keen to see that their rights are not only protected, but broadened. According to leading counsellor and psychotherapist, Joseph Poullis of The Psychotherapy Clinic which includes issues of sexuality as one of its specialisms, simply coming to terms with sexuality can cause many people significant problems, without having to cope with the discrimination and injustices that they then have to face in the community and as part of their everyday lives.
Mr Poullis commented, ‘Even now, in what are supposed to be more enlightened times, many people of all ages still face enormous problems in understanding and coming to terms with their own sexuality, and often the attitudes of those around them make it so much harder. Even in cases where there is no question as to an individual’s sexual orientation, the prejudice and discrimination that they face can be extremely damaging to their mental health. In our practice, we see many who are troubled to the point where they are suffering from depression and anxiety or are even considering taking their own lives. The challenges which are faced by those in the gay community are often not ones which are easily understood or even respected by others and, while it is not of course within our power to alter the opinions and attitudes of the entire population of the country, what we can do is to help the individuals themselves and those closest to them to find peace in their personal choices and decisions.’
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