LGBTQ+

If you need more information about our group you can leave a comment here, or contact Ste Richardsson directly at lgbtq@xjwfriends.com

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We have compiled a list of places where you can get advice and support if you are in the LGBTQ+ community: https://xjwfriends.com/lgbtq-advice/

We have also collated a list of useful YouTube videos and channels to help people with specific issues: https://xjwfriends.com/lgbtq-youtube/

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Ste at Deptford Pride 2017

Ste Richardsson, one of the two Co-directors of XJW Friends, runs a Facebook group for doubting and former Jehovah’s Witnesses called XJW Friends – LGBTQ+. You can join the group by clicking the link and answering two short questions.

XJW Friends is an LGBTQ+ friendly group. We don’t just use “LGBTQ+” as a buzzword for “gay and lesbian”, but we try to include all the letters including the “B” and the “Q”, as well as trans men or women, non-binary (NB, enby) people and those who are are at any point within the gender spectrum or outside the spectrum.

So whatever your identity, you will be most definitely be welcome at our events.

Ste is a gay, polyamorous, gender-non-conforming man. He started primary school in the same year as Section 28 was brought in by the UK government, banning teachers from teaching children about same-sex relationships. Both Section 28 and his Jehovah’s Witness upbringing had a profound effect on his identity as a child. who had stood up for LGBTQ+ rights on many occasions, fighting homophobia and transphobia.

Ste (middle) and his partner Peter (right) meeting Booan Temple (left) in 2019, at a commemoration of the 30th year anniversary of the ratification of Section 28.

Booan Temple, member of “Stop the Clause” storming the BBC Six o’clock news in 1989.

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Humanists UK(Faith to Faithless & LGBT Humanists)

He is Vice-chair of Faith to Faithless and a committee member of LGBT Humanists, which are a programme and a section of Humanists UK, a British charity which has fought for the rights of asylum seekers in countries where being a member of the LGBTQ+ community is illegal or persecuted. Ste also does a lot of volunteering and consulting with Humanists UK itself.

Deptford Pride

Peter and Ste at Deptford Pride 2018

Ste is a Co-director, with his partner Peter Collins, of Deptford Pride, an annual grass-roots community pride in his local area of Deptford in south-east London. Apart from the annual Pride in August, Deptford Pride also runs tours of the area for LGBT History Month and Black History Month and it runs a friendly . and inclusive Queer Clothes Swap event, which is open to all, but especially benefits younger people who are in the middle of their transition.

Other LGBTQ+ Activism

Ste volunteers for Trans Pride Brighton every year, is very good friends with Phyll Opoku-Gyimah, the co-founder of UK BLack Pride and attends the “think-ins” for the revived group GLF (Gay Liberation Front), who aim to re-claim Pride from the corporations and are about to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the first Pride they organised in London. 

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