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Posted On: 2nd May 2013

Homophobia Fix on ITV Anglia

Schuylar (left) and Sarah (right)
Schuylar and Sarah discussing their project
Sarah and Schuylar recording the insults for their booth

Two women, who have been victims of homophobic abuse throughout their lives, are creating a unique art installation to highlight the effects of these attacks.

 

Fixers Sarah Marchant (24) and Schuylar Kerkhoff-Harvey (17), from Norwich, are constructing a “gay booth” to highlight the abuse gay people across the UK receive on a daily basis.

 

People entering the booth will be plunged into darkness while typical homophobic insults are hurled at them through speakers, giving them insight into how it feels to be a victim of homophobic bullying.

 

‘I can remember being picked on for being a lesbian – I can remember having “dyke” comments thrown my way,’ says Sarah.

 

‘The more I thought about, the more I thought there was something wrong with me. The booth is there to give straight people an idea of what gay people go through on a day-to-day basis.’

 

The film sees Sarah and Schuylar discussing some of the ideas they have for their “gay booth” project with a designer.

 

Also in the film is Dr Ian Newey, a clinical psychologist at Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust, who discusses the origins of homophobia. 

 

‘I think that homophobic bullying comes from the same roots as racism, sexism, or bullying someone because they may have red hair,’ Dr Newey says.

 

‘I think that people listen to the things that are used by their families and those around them and copy that.’

 

Sarah hopes their project will put an end to the ignorance surrounding homosexuality.

 

‘Being gay only changes up to five per-cent of my life,’ she says. ‘The only difference it makes is who I am cuddling up to at night.

 

‘I am comfortable in my own skin and it would be great if our message came across to people that it’s not right to be unpleasant and aggressive to people just because of their sexuality.’

Author: Ashley Scrace

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