Northern-Ireland

Ireland is set to become the first country in the world to enforce a national LGBT youth strategy.

The strategy will help tackle homophobia and address other challenges faced by young LGBT people in Ireland.

Events are being organised across the country to open a line of communication and give government ministers a better understanding of issues that need to be addressed.

The launch is starting on Facebook where Katherine Zappone, the Children’s Minister, will be launching an online questionnaire.

The programme hopes to be able to make changes in key policy areas after holding consultations with people aging between 15 and 24.

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Minister Zappone, who is recognised for contributing to the equal marriage debate in Ireland when she took a case to have her marriage with her wife recognised to the high court, said: “Today we invite young people across Ireland to be part of history. Through Facebook Live and an online consultation with Spunout.ie they will help form the world’s first LGBTI+ National Youth Strategy.”

The strategy is based on The National Policy Framework for Children and Young People 2014-2020 framework that aims to ensure children and young people are: active and healthy physically and mentally, excelling in all areas of learning and development, safe and protected from harm, have economic security and opportunity and are connected, respected and contributing to their community and world.

The strategy comes after research found that there had been an “enormous surge” in the number of young LGBT people who felt comfortable coming out.

However, it also found that 56 per cent of respondents thought homophobic, biphobic and transphobic bullying had continued at the same rates as before the vote.

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