Coming Out: What does the future hold for young LGBTI+ people in Donegal?

first_imgComing Out: Young Donegal man Ayrton Kelly continues his column series with giving an insight into his journey in the LGBTI+ community and life in Donegal.Read Ayrton’s first three posts here:– Growing up Gay in Donegal– ‘New Year, New Me’ was never so true– We have come a long way for LGBTI+ Equality. but we can still do better This week, Ayrton looks towards future of equality and the ‘National LGBTI+ Youth Strategy’.Minister Katherine ZapponeThe rural-urban divide in Ireland is as clear as day in Donegal – Ireland’s Forgotten County. This divide affects everyone and everything. Inequality is often exacerbated as a result of the chasm between rural counties and metropolitan areas. While Donegal is the Republic of Ireland’s fourth largest county by size and eighth largest by population. It is an incredible county and I loved growing up here but, if you’re LGBTI+ there is a serious lack of visibility, awareness and support that is available in the capital.One prime example is with regard to sexual health services. Letterkenny GUM (genitourinary medicine) or sexual health clinic runs once every Thursday evening from Letterkenny University Hospital. Conversely, in Dublin, St. James’ Hospital has a dedicated GUIDE  Clinic every day of the week while the GMHS (Gay Men’s Health Service) operates from Baggot Street Hospital four days of the week and offers tailored, specific medical care to gay men who are most at risk of contracting STIs and HIV (Department of Health, 2015). In terms of Youth Service provision, Donegal Youth Service is also based in Letterkenny as is BreakOUT. However, over the years BreakOUT has grown and has groups in Letterkenny, Ballybofey, Glenties and Moville and offers a safe and supportive place for young LGBTI+ people and their friends/allies in addition to information, training and one-to-one support, all of which I have availed of in my time. Conversely, Dublin has BeLonG To, TENI, the Outhouse and other specific supports not as readily available in the North West.A lack of public transport and socio-economic disadvantage will hinder a young LGBTI+ person’s ability to seek help and support in Donegal compared to their counterparts in the Greater Dublin Area who can hop on a Luas, Dublin Bus or DART at relatively low cost and high frequency.Donegal is quite a conservative county. We saw this during the recent Referendum to remove the Eighth Amendment (Article 40.3.3) of the Constitution of Ireland, and even before that in 2015 where – 50% of Donegal people said Yes to Equality compared to 70% in Dublin.And yet, I don’t think there is as much homophobia in Donegal or Ireland as there once was, but a lack of visibility in rural counties devoid young people of the opportunity to think about the impact of using words like ‘fag’, ‘tranny,’ or ‘gay’ in a derogatory sense. From experience, a lot of the time it is not malice, but ignorance and habit that words like these are used. Compared to the general youth population, young LGBTI+ people are twice as likely to self harm; three times more likely to attempt suicide and four times more likely to suffer from severe mental health issues (BeLonGTo & GLEN, 2016). Body image and eating disorders, substance use and abuse (drugs, alcohol and tobacco), cutting, homelessness, and STIs are some of many issues that are statistically more likely to affect the LGBTI+ population than the non-LGBTI+ population.It is true that every young person in Ireland has a tough time growing up. But evidence has shown that young LGBTI+ are disproportionately disadvantaged. The National Youth Strategy 2015-2020 and the Brighter Outcomes, Better Futures framework have tried and failed to deal with the nuanced needs of the young LGBTI+ people of Ireland and have not reacted effectively enough.‘Everyone benefits’ With the publishing of the National LGBTI+ Youth Strategy (DCYA, 2018) there are 59 specific actions that will aim to make Ireland a better, more equal place for all its young people.The strategy does not benefit young LGBTI+ people to the detriment of the non-LGBTI+ young people. If we have better sexual health services, better SPHE and RSE, more rigorous anti-bullying procedures, better access to Youth Services, more awareness around mental health, and better visibility of leaders that are LGBTI+ then everyone benefits. In order to achieve equality that we so desperately want and need here in the Republic of Ireland, we accept people for who they are; to be supportive and to ensure all young people feel valued.Ayrton Kelly is 20 years old and from Letterkenny, Co. Donegal. He is studying Business and French in UCD and before that attended St Eunan’s College. By working with Donegal Youth Service, UCD Students’ Union, Foróige, Youth Work Ireland, BeLonG To and the Department of Children and Youth Affairs has become interested in equality and social Justice. Most recently, he was on the Youth Advisory Group and Oversight Committee for the National LGBTI+ Youth Strategy.BreakOut is a project for young LGBTI people, LGBTI Allies and young people that believe in social justice aged 12-30, and is operated by Donegal Youth Service.  Currently there are groups meeting up regularly in Letterkenny, Ballybofey, Glenties and Moville offering information, training, one-to-one support and guaranteed craic. If you would like to come along and see what it’s all about contact Sinead Murray on 074 91 29630/086 124 7968, pop in to 16-18 Port Road, or find BreakOut on Facebook.Coming Out: What does the future hold for young LGBTI+ people in Donegal? was last modified: August 3rd, 2018 by Staff WriterShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:Ayrton Kellycoming outLGBTIsexualitylast_img read more

Man United to announce £60m Morata deal, Arsenal to bid £70m for Sporting duo?

first_imgHere are the top transfer-related stories in Tuesday’s newspapers…Manchester United aim to announce the £60million signing of Alvaro Morata on Thursday. There was significant progress made on the deal for the Real Madrid striker over the weekend. Morata’s father and agent met officials at the club on Monday to iron out the details of the deal. (The Sun)Diego Costa is adamant he will not be pushed out the door by Antonio Conte and is holding up Chelsea’s move to re-sign Romelu Lukaku from Everton. Costa has turned down a move to China’s Super League and will only quit Stamford Bridge for a return to Atletico Madrid. (Daily Mirror)Chelsea have indicated they are willing to pay a club-record £60 million to land Juventus left-back Alex Sandro. Fresh talks regarding Sandro’s future took place on Monday and it is essentially now down to the player whether or not he will move to Stamford Bridge. (Daily Telegraph)Arsenal are planning a £70million double raid on Sporting Lisbon for William Carvalho and Gelson Martins. (The Sun)Jens Lehmann is to join Arsenal as a first-team coach. The German will return to the club for a third time, following two stints as a player, as Arsène Wenger tinkers with his backroom staff. (Guardian)West Ham want to bring Javier Hernandez back to the Premier League as they strive to bolster their striking options this summer. The Hammers also remain in the hunt for Arsenal’s Olivier Giroud and Chelsea’s Michy Batshuayi, but hope to make progress in negotiations over Hernandez. (Daily Telegraph)Rafa Benitez has been urged to have patience with Newcastle’s lack of progress in the transfer market. Benitez wants at least five new recruits capable of improving his first XI, and has grown increasingly frustrated he hasn’t made a flying start to his rebuild. (Daily Mirror)Everton are set to make a £20m move for Arsenal striker Olivier Giroud. Giroud, 30, is almost certain to be on the move as Arsenal are ready to complete a £44m-plus move for Lyon striker Alexandre Lacazette. (Daily Mirror)Southampton are playing hardball on Ryan Bertrand – and are determined to block him leaving this summer. Manchester City are keen on the England left back as Pep Guardiola looks to strengthen his squad and they believe Bertrand is ready to quit. But Southampton have told Bertrand they are not ready to let him go this summer despite strong interest from City and Liverpool. (Daily Mirror)Birmingham City boss Harry Redknapp plans to spend the money he has saved on John Terry’s wages to pay for five or six other new players instead. (Daily Mirror)Former Manchester United wonderkid Ravel Morrison is training with Birmingham City with a view to a permanent move from Lazio. (Daily Mirror)And here are the latest headlines…?talkSPORT EXCLUSIVE – Everton expecting Wayne Rooney to re-sign from Manchester United this summerPaul Clement EXCLUSIVE: Swansea City boss on John Terry snub, transfer plans and more‘I’d like to wish John Terry well, but it’s difficult for me to do that!’ – Birmingham assistant boss Kevin Bond on defender’s decision to join Aston VillaDEAL CLOSE? Former Manchester United ace Angel Di Maria has ‘agreed personal terms’ with Inter MilanSNUBBED! Watford-linked goalkeeper wants Valencia move over Premier League switchArsenal transfer ALERT! Gunners to face competition in pursuit of Norwegian teen ace Sander BergeTransfer BATTLE! Leicester and Roma in fight for Sassuolo striker Gregoire DefrelTransfer report: Monaco BLOCKING Thomas Lemar and Benjamin Mendy exits, amid links with Arsenal and Manchester Citylast_img read more