The Origin of LGBT History Month

The concept of LGBT History month was started in the US in 1994 by a high school teacher in Missouri called Rodney Wilson, who served as the founder of the first coordinating committee. Many gay and lesbian organizations of the time supported the concept early on as well as many governors and mayors who recognized the month with official proclamations.

On June 2, 2000, President Bill Clinton declared June “Gay & Lesbian Pride Month”. President Barack Obama declared June Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Pride Month on June 1, 2009.

In the UK LGBT History month started with the Schools Out UK project by Sue Sanders and Paul Patrick in February 2005, continuing annually each year throughout February. The month is intended as a means to raise awareness of, and combat prejudice against the LGBT community while celebrating its achievement and diversity and making it more visible.

The event came in the wake of the abolition of Section 28 in 2003, the Employment Equality (Sexual Orientation) Regulations 2003 as well as the government’s proposals to bring in a single equality act and a public duty, although this, in fact, did not come to fruition until 2010.

This year the theme of LGBT History month is Peace, Activism and Reconciliation, in which we reflect on the events of the past and the activists who helped get us this far and look to how we can work towards peace in the future.

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