Saturday, October 11, 2014, is celebrated internationally as Coming Out Day for the LGBT community. Here in Chennai, it also marks the completion of five years of the Campaign for Open Minds.
Launched in 2009, the campaign was an effort to mobilize support from healthcare professionals and friends and family members of LGBT people towards ending homophobia, biphobia and transphobia in India.
The campaign focused on opposing conversion therapy, forced marriages, negative media portrayals, and other rights violations, and on increasing the visibility of the LGBTQ community. It led to the identification of several allies across the country, some of whom eventually became signatories of the petitions from parents and mental health professionals submitted in 2011 to the Supreme Court of India in support of the Naz Foundation verdict on Section 377.
This Saturday, we will take stock of what the Campaign for Open Minds achieved and possibilities for taking it forward. We will also discuss the following additional objectives: (a) To urge the Tamil Nadu government and Indian parliament to take proactive steps in amending section 377, (b) To work on building support spaces for married queer/trans folks and their spouses. Our comrades at Nirangal, the advocacy and crisis-support group, will share information on their exciting new initiatives to increase awareness of legal issues and concerns of the LGBTQI community.
Join us as we celebrate the fifth anniversary of ‘Campaign for Open Minds’ on Saturday, October 11, 2014, at ICSA (Jeevana Jothi) – Egmore, from 3 pm to 5 pm. We also look forward to discussing the way forward for the Tamil Nadu queer movement, especially as we look to derive inspiration from our own self-respect movement in the state.
Campaign for Open Minds – National Coming Out Day
- Date: October 11, 2014
- Time: 3 PM to 5 PM
- Venue: ICSA (Jeevana Jothi), Pantheon Road, Egmore, Chennai – 600 008