1) Define the term homosexuality?
Homosexuality is when an individual is in a personal relationship with someone of the same sex.
2) Within the BME community how many people have you met that have openly expressed that they are homosexual?
Not a lot
3) Why do you think homosexuality is silenced within the BME community?
Majority of people from BME communities are religious so the idea of homosexuality conflicts with their religion and faith.
4) Do you think there is a link between religion, culture and homosexuality if so please explain?
Yes there is a link because, according to the Bible and Quran it is natural to be attracted to a person of the opposite sex but not a person of the same sex due to reproduction. The Bible discusses things like “be fruitful and multiple” this is often perceived as a command to human beings to give birth and multiply. Subsequently, homosexuality does not adhere to this command as two men or two women cannot conceive naturally.
5) Tell me about stereotypes and stigmas associated to homosexuality within BME communities?
Homosexuality is often associated with infections such as HIV and AIDS. Homosexuality is seen as putting shame or dishonour on the family name, within African communities individual are often labelled as possessed with demons or are labelled with a mental health condition.
6) In your view how might these stigmas and stereotypes have an impact on an individual who is homosexual?
Such views may cause low self-esteem. It can lead to depression and possibly suicide. Individuals may feel isolated and might have to go through the cycle/ stages alone (denial, acceptance, coming out etc).
7) In your view, what can the BME community do to raise awareness about this issue of silenced homosexuality?
Disuses openly about homosexuality within youth groups and educate upcoming younger generations. Producing leaflets for BME groups to help raise awareness about this matter and also educating the older generation in helping them understand that, we need to love people as the bible commands us to “love thy neighbours as yourself” regardless of sex, gender or race.
8) What advise can you give to any person from the BME community who is homosexual and fearful of coming out?
Reach out to your local LGBT group for support. You can also confide in a friend or trusted personnel.
Pearl, Hampshire UK