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Posted On: 8th May 2013

Anti-Homophobia Story on ITV

Fixer David Shield
View of Scottish Borders
School scene from broadcast story

A Fixer, who was bullied because of his sexuality, is working to stamp out homophobic bullying in schools.  

 

Lead Fixer David Shields (21) says he first became the victim of bullying in primary school after his mum came out as a lesbian, and it continued after he himself came out at 15.

 

He and the LGBT group he works with, LGBT Youth Borders, feel there is a specific problem in the region of ‘small mindedness in small communities’, and are concerned homophobia is not taken as seriously as it should be.

 

Working with Fixers, they want to produce a resource aimed at educating teachers about homophobia in their area.

 

David feels it’s more acceptable to be LGBT in a larger city like Edinburgh or Glasgow, and that openly gay young people in the Scottish Borders face being threatened or verbally and physically assaulted.

 

David explains: ‘The Scottish borders are a lovely place and a lot of people come here to see the great views.

 

‘For me it’s hard to have a positive view of where I live, because it’s always clouded by the negativity that I had, and that ruins the whole idea of the Borders.

 

‘I used to wake up and dread the day ahead. I used to worry every break time. Every chance there was, I used to get bullied.'

 

Karen Wilson from LGBT Scotland, who appears in the film, says: 'The David I first met wouldn't walk along the high street. He would take all the back ways home.

 

'He wouldn't want to go into school because he'd suffered a lot of homophobia. Schools need to have a zero tolerance when it comes to homophobic remarks.'

 

David hopes his Fixers project will encourage people in the region to be more tolerant of LGBT people.

 

‘My Fixers project is to get schools treating homophobia as serious as racism,’ David explains.

 

'What I would like to see in years to come is plain and simple - equality for everyone.'

 

Author: N. Farooq

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