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Trinity marks LGBT+ History Month 2021

Ishbel Russell and Radu Nicolescu raise the flag at Trinity’s Boathouse. Photo: Graham CopeKoga

The rainbow flag was raised from Newton’s Lawn and the Trinity Boathouse to mark the start of LGBT+ History Month 2021 in the UK.

Trinity College Students’ Union LGBTQ+ Officer Ishbel Russell was delighted to raise the flag.

I’m honoured to have helped the College celebrate and commemorate the start of this LGBT+ History Month. Given how much we can’t do this year, it’s more important than ever that the College remained committed to tangibly expressing their commitment to their LGBT+ students.

Ishbel Russell and Radu Nicolescu raise the flag at Trinity’s Boathouse. Photo: Graham CopeKoga

BA Society LGBTQ+ Officer Radu Nicolescu said despite the damp grey morning it was a fine moment for Cambridge.

I am excited and delighted to do this for Trinity and our LGBTQ+ community. Trinity is not the same without our students around, but this moment brought an important sense of unity.

Both flags will be flown daily throughout February. Since the first appearance of the rainbow flag in San Francisco in 1978 it has symbolised the diversity of the LGBT+ community and the pride felt by its members. LGBT+ History Month promotes equality and diversity by celebrating the achievements of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people, as well as raising awareness of matters affecting the community.

Among the developments at Trinity since the Master, Dame Sally Davies, raised the rainbow flag a year ago, is the establishment of a Gender Expression Fund and gender neutral bathrooms in the Library, College Bar and above Hall after a proposal by the students’ unions, led by Ishbel, who said:

The Gender Expression Fund enables the TCSU and BA LGBT+ Officers to purchase items on behalf of students to help alleviate dysphoria and allow them to feel comfortable in their gender expression. We purchase the items of a cost of up to £80 per application, and then send them to the student. All information is kept confidential. Please apply here:

The rainbow flag going up at Newton’s Lawn. Photo: Graham CopeKoga

Despite the constraints of lockdown, Ishbel and Radu will deliver LGBTQ+ face masks and sweet treats to students’ pigeonholes and on 10 February, 8pm there will be a virtual LGBTQ+ Bar Night. Here is how it works: if you are a Trinity student in Cambridge, a drink of your choice (non-alcoholic or alcoholic) will be delivered to your pigeonhole; and for those at home, you can be reimbursed £3 for your home-made drink. Information about these opportunities will be circulated to students soon.

Then there will be a talk and Q&A with Moroccan writer and filmmaker, Abdellah Taïa, via Zoom (date and details to come.)

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