Tom Daley has been praised by viewers for his unflinching and ‘shocking’ look at how LGBTQ+ people are treated in certain countries in his documentary Tom Daley: Illegal To Be Me.The 28-year-old retired diver spoke to athletes identifying as members of the LGBTQ+ about their experiences of persecution in their home countries ahead of the Commonwealth Games, where 35 of the 56 member states still outlaw homosexuality.Travelling to places including Jamaica and Pakistan, as well as speaking with a Nigerian refugee, the programme did not shy away from revealing the full and traumatic extent of some of its participants’ experiences – one of whom was stabbed in the arm for being gay, and another of who’s friend was murdered.As Tom himself said in reaction to that story: ‘Sad doesn’t even cover it, it’s like something out of a horror film.’However, the documentary attracted plaudits online as Tom campaigned for the Pride flag to be included in the Games’ Opening Ceremony, as well as exploring the idea of banning anti-LGBT nations from hosting the event in future years.‘Tom Daley is no longer just a sportsman, he’s an activist & a #LGBTQ community hero,’ tweeted one fan. ‘Using his diving platform to take a leap into uncomfortable truths about the commonwealth (a day after they ended!) with other leading activists is a bold move.
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