Ruairi Quinn Opens EU Conference On Homophobic Bullying
The Minister for Education, Ruairí Quinn, has today opened an EU conference on homophobic and transphobic bullying in schools.
The Conference, organised by the European Region of the International Lesbian and Gay Association (ILGA-Europe) and Irish LGBT organisations GLEN and BeLonG To, is the first ever EU-level conference on homophobic and transphobic bullying in schools. It will bring together national policy makers, teachers, school leaders and NGOs to debate and look for methods to tackle the issue of homophobic and transphobic bullying in schools.
The Minister of Education said: "Education plays a key role in supporting LGBT young people and also tackling the underlying prejudices which can lead to homophobic and transphobic bullying".
ILGA-Europe has cooperated closely with its member organisations in Ireland, GLEN and BeLonG To, in organising this conference.
“There is a growing understanding of the seriousness of the issues for young LGBT people, both in Ireland and across Europe. The Department of Education has recently published a national Action Plan on Bullying that fully integrates measures to tackle prejudice, including homophobia and transphobia which are the root causes of much bullying. The lessons being learned in Ireland can contribute to further developments across Europe, much as we can learn from innovative and successful practices in other countries” said Michael Barron, Director of BeLonG To Youth Services.