LGBT charter adopted in 60% of Scotland secondary schools. Why is it important?
The scheme has been welcomed by 212 out of the country's 357 secondary schools.
The initiative has been introduced by the non profit organisation ‘LGBT Youth Scotland’, which claims to be the Scotland's national charity and is aimed to foster acceptance among teachers and students alike through training sessions that challenge prejudice and promote diversity and equality.
The scheme has been welcomed by 212 out of the country's 357 secondary schools, along with 40 primary schools and 21 colleges and universities, which have either been awarded the charter status or are currently working towards it.
LGBT charter says..
The 'LGBT charter' offers four awards to local authority teams for developing inclusionary processes, education providers, teachers and learners.
The charity's experts are working to guide the institutions and organisations towards the charter status, which takes around 12 to 18 months to achieve. The process involves training sessions, policy development, practice implementation and monitoring.
The report quoted the charity as saying that the high proportion of Scottish secondary schools, as well as further education providers, participating in the ‘LGBT charter’ demonstrates the schools' key role in creating a safe space for young LGBTQ+ people in Scotland.
The charity aims to reach 75% of secondary schools in the coming year, which would mark a significant stride towards a more inclusive society.
LGBT charter's acceptance amid row over ‘Gender Recognition Reform Bill’
The Scottish Parliament made a landmark decision in December 2022 to pass the Gender Recognition Reform Scotland bill, allowing trans individuals to self-identify, according to a Sky News report. However, the UK government's intervention in January has since turned it into a constitutional dispute.
The government invoked section 35 of the Scotland Act to block the bill from receiving royal assent and becoming law, citing concerns about its “significant impact” on equalities matters in Scotland, England, and Wales.
In response to Westminster's veto of the bill, the Scottish government recently announced that it would seek a judicial review.
The bill, if passed into law, would bring significant changes to Scotland's gender recognition process. The age at which someone can legally change their gender would be lowered from 18 to 16, removing the requirement for a medical diagnosis of gender dysphoria.
Additionally, those over 18 would only need to live in their acquired gender for three months, down from two years. While the 16 and 17-year-olds applying for a gender recognition certificate would be required to live in their acquired gender for at least six months.