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Posted On: 6th Mar 2010

Challenge Homophobia Fix on ITV

Lead Fixer James Sutcliffe
The group rehearse their play
Fixer Joe Squires-Mulcahy

After experiencing severe homophobic abuse which made him fear for his safety, James Sutcliffe (20) and his group of Fixers from Dewsbury in Yorkshire have started a campaign to challenge homophobia.

 

Their story was broadcast on ITV News Calendar in March 2010.

 

With the help of Fixers, James and his team have worked on a film featuring excerpts from a play they created to raise awareness of the impacts of homophobia.

 

The performance is based on the true story of James' friend who took his own life - a death that James believes was down to homophobic bullying.  

 

Describing his own experiences of being bullied due to his sexuality, James says:

 

‘I was placed on anti-depressants because I was afraid to sleep. People used to bang on the door and I was scared they were going to break in.

 

‘I’m now living back in with my mum so it has affected me a lot.’

 

Fellow Fixer, Joe Squires-Mulcahy, says he self-harmed after having bricks thrown at him in an act of homophobic abuse. He adds:

 

‘The plan is to send this DVD out so people can see what a gay person being bullied is really like.

 

‘We’re trying to open people’s minds a lot more. I want homophobic bullying to be challenged and we want Fixers to help us challenge this problem.’

 

Their Fixers project will include a DVD and an information pack to be presented at schools and colleges.

 

The aim is to target young people and their parents to generate understanding among both generations.

 

Sally Kitson, a Youth Project Worker for LGBT youth, appears in the broadcast piece to support the campaign, saying:

 

‘It needs young people to stand up and say “I want to make a difference”, and I think this DVD is a way to help them achieve that.’

 

Watch their Fixers film 'Straight Out' below.

 

 

 

Author: Cara Laithwaite

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