LGBT rights activist Stuart Milk at LJMU

Global LGBT rights activist, Stuart Milk, the nephew of the late civil rights icon, Harvey Milk, came to LJMU to speak about continuing the work of his uncle and campaigning internationally for LGBT rights.

Harvey Milk was the first openly gay man elected to public office in the United States, and was sworn in in January 1978. Ten months later, on November 27th 1978, he was assassinated in his office. Stuart is the founder of the Harvey Milk Foundation, an organisation engaging in domestic (US) and international activism, including work with LGBT movements in Latin America, Europe, Asia and the Middle East. During the talk he gave a summary of his human rights activism, and the legacy of his uncle, and spoke movingly about some of the young LGBT people who continue to motivate him, both in the UK and around the world. 

In particular Stuart outlined the case of Milán Rózsa, a Hungarian LGBT activist who was tragically murdered in 2014. He also spoke about his visits to schools in the UK and the impact of this work on staff and students in feeling able to be open about their LGBTQI identity. 

Dr Emma Vickers, Senior Lecturer in Humanities and Social Science, and organiser of the event, commented: “Once Stuart had finished speaking and taking questions he spent half an hour chatting with the audience, many of whom were young people. This was Stuart's last talk in the UK before he flew home to the US and we are incredibly lucky that he chose to spend his last day in the UK at LJMU.”

Stuart has given major formal addresses on multiple continents, including to the House of Lords, the Italian Chamber of Deputies, the Panamanian National Assembly, and the Turkish Grand Assembly. He has led on award-winning programmes in 63 countries in support of LGBT and human rights and has been globally recognised with dozens of distinguished honours for over two decades of tireless leadership in some of the most challenging human rights environments on five continents. Former American President, Barack Obama called Stuart's global outreach "unparalleled, inspiring and exceptionally effective." 

The event at LJMU marked the end of LGBT History month.

You can listen to Stuart's talk here


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