Sunday, 6 October 2013

Hello beautiful people, 

Our first Coffee Hour will be taking place tomorrow at 1pm in Palmer G20, so come along if you want to meet some fellow LGBT+ers! The next one after this will be on Thursday, same time and place, we look forward to meeting everyone.

Our first social is a white t-shirt social, happening on Thursday 17th October. We are meeting at Park Bar at 7:30pm and moving onto the Rising Sun and ending up in Sub89 for Propaganda. If you need a white t-shirt get in touch with our social secs Sahadev Joshi or Ashleigh Williams via Facebook or come along to a coffee hour before the 17th. 

If anyone needs help getting to Park Bar or feels uncomfortable with arriving alone or not knowing anybody, we have a buddy support system in place, meaning that one of our committee members will come and meet you, just email

Hopefully see you soon,

Zanna Joyce
LGBT+ President

Thursday, 3 October 2013

Hello everyone,

We had an amazing time at Freshers Fayre yesterday, the new committee are brilliant which means you all will have a fantastic time this year. We met lots of newcomers, so welcome to our LGBT+ society! We have a range of different events planned that try to suit everyone's preferences, but are always open to suggestions from you guys. If you haven't already please like or join our Facebook pages, follow us on Twitter (links are in the sidebar), or feel free to email us on for any queries or to get in touch. We will shortly be updating our events page with details of our upcoming socials and activities so please check back on that page soon. 

P.s. look at how pretty our stall was!

It was lovely to meet everyone, hopefully see you soon,

Zanna Joyce
LGBT+ President

Friday, 5 October 2012

Freshers Fair 2012

Thanks to all those who came to our Freshers Fair stall!
We had an amazing turn out and everyone had loads of fun, especially Zanna Joyce (Welfare Rep) and Scott Daniels (Events/Socials Rep) as pictured above! :D

Wednesday, 3 October 2012

Hello and Welcome to all new and returning students!

Hello and Welcome to all new and returning students!

We are Reading University's Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) Group. We work to create a social place for people that define as LGBT within the University and in the local community. We offer support, advice and also campaign and work for the progression of the rights of LGBT people. We do this through raising awareness or stopping harassment within the university and the wider community. We have a really proactive and sociable team dedicated to getting as many people involved as possible.
We've got loads of great events coming up this term:


Welcome Get- Together
3pm Sunday 14th October
This will be a chance to get to know knew people and catch up with others on campus. There'll be games, refreshments and great laughs!!

Rainbow Rubix Cube Night Out
8pm Thursday 18th October
We will be having our first night out of the year, kicking off at Park Bar on campus at 8pm then heading on to The Wynford Arms, The Rising Sun, and finally Propaganda for those that fancy it. Come in rainbow colours and clothes that you don't mind swapping!

Meal at Zizi's
Tuesday 30th October

Coffee Hours

Starting from Thursday 18th October we will be running coffee hours every Monday and Thursday from 1-2pm in The Lounge, behind the Students Union building. These are a great opportunity to meet and chat with other LGBT students. They are informal events so feel free to bring your lunch with you and any games you’d like to play. There'll be a different activity every Thursday coffee hour.

Student Feedback Session
Thursday 18th October
This will be a chance to let the committee know what you would like the LGBT Group to do and what you are passionate about changing.

Coming Out Workshop
and viewing of Reading LGBT Group "It Gets Better" video
Thursday 25th October

Thursday, 17 May 2012

International Day against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia

Hello everyone, for those of you who don’t know me, my name is Ken Smailes and I am the outgoing President of RUSU’s LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Trans) Liberation Group and the RUSU LGBT Part Time Officer.

Today is an extremely important day for the LGBT community globally; it is the International Day against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia or simply IDAHO for short. This day is celebrated every year on May 17th to highlight that the unfair treatment of the LGBT community still happens around the world and still within the UK. It is a day for the LGBT community globally, to join together with the rest of the world and stand up against homophobia, biphobia and transphobia.

To put the rights of the LGBT community into context, I want to give you a brief history lesson. In 1957 in the UK, Lord Wolfenden, who at the time was the vice chancellor of the University of Reading, wrote a report that called on the removal of homosexuality as an illegal act. It was with this report and continued pressure on the government that homosexuality finally became legal in the UK in 1967. Ever since 1967 the LGBT community in the UK has been slowly receiving more and more rights in their fight for equality. It was only in 2002 that LGBT couples, or single LGBT individuals were given equal adoption rights. Now it looks increasingly more likely that same sex couples will be able to marry. Yet these rights that the LGBT community have in the UK are not universal and even in the USA, in some states, LGBT people can still be removed from their jobs for simply defining as a different sexuality. Equality for the LGBT community has not been achieved in the UK or worldwide.

Unfortunately instances of homophobia, biphobia and transphobia are also still very real within the UK and the wider world. This unfair treatment of the LGBT community can come in many forms, whether it is physical harassment, murder, derogatory use of the word ‘gay’ or many other things, for many individuals it is all still too real an occurrence. I was shown this video by a member of the LGBT group recently and it really put the problem of homophobia into context for me:

Today is however a day to create change!

Yes homophobia, biphobia and transphobia is still a very real part of the LGBT communities life but we can all put an end to this, by simply standing up for the equal treatment of everyone. No one deserves to be treated differently just because they are of a different sexuality or gender or sexual orientation. Everyone is equal and we should show this through our actions.
Unfair treatment of anyone whether they are of a different race, gender, sexuality etc doesn’t have a place on our campus or within our community and let’s demonstrate this through our actions.

Ken Smailes
RUSU LGBT President and RUSU LGBT Part Time Officer

Wednesday, 25 April 2012

Ken Smailes and Sophie Longley
NUS LGBT Conference 2012

NUS Student conference this year was amazing. It was my first time going to a conference, let alone voting on important issues that would affect all LGBT students. At first, it was hard to get to grips with how to vote on the motions; but it got easier as the day progressed. Attending this conference has brought to light just how much students from universities all over the UK care about LGBT issues. What’s more, it also emphasised the amount of work NUS has done over the years. The workshops throughout the weekend were very useful. I attended a workshop about producing an effective campaign which demonstrated just how much hard work goes in to promoting LGBT issues. Other workshops I participated in were ‘Faith and Sexuality’ and ‘LGBT in Sport’. The discussions in the ‘Faith and Sexuality’ workshop were extremely thought-provoking. It showed that identifying as LGBT does not mean the loss of religious beliefs. It also gave us some ideas on how to unite our LGBT group with some of Reading University’s religious societies. ‘LGBT in Sport’ was a great discussion to attend as it focused on the difficulties some LGBT people have within the sporting world. What was most interesting were the problems transgendered people faced in relation to single sex sports teams and changing rooms. The highlight of the trip was the awards dinner where our very own LGBT group came top 5 in ‘most developed’, ‘best campaign’ and ‘best LGBT Officer/President’. Next year, we’ll win them all! 

Sophie x

Ken Smailes

NUS LGBT Conference 2012

NUS LGBT Conference, a weekend of drama, policy, motions, Manchester nightlife and development of LGBT rights. I can honestly say I have never been to such an encouraging and thought provoking conference. The Reading University delegation decided that we would all write a blog/report so that you, the society can see how we voted on your behave and to encourage you to get involved in the LGBT movement and the fight for ever increasing rights.

Over the weekend there a number of different workshops that I attended, the most interesting and important to me was one titled ‘faith and sexuality, a dialogue’. This workshop had a lot of relevance to me as I grew up in a very Christian family and have always found the relationship between faith and sexuality particularly difficult to negotiate. The workshop gave advice on how to workshops to have an open and frank discussion about how sexuality and different faiths can work together; you don’t just have to have one or another. It was also really interesting to see how many people at conference both defined as LGBT and as with faith, which was encouraging.

The weekend was mainly filled with motion debate; these motions go into NUS LGBT policy and dictate how the campaign is run over the next year. I am happy to say that the majority of policy passed was brilliant, it included motions to encourage more work on helping trans people parent, sexual health, more equal representation of bisexual people and continuation of the campaign on ending the blood donation bad for men who sleep with men. The motion that did seem to be most controversial was that including Harry Potter and Dumbledore as a gay figure, this definitely brought some strong opinions from the conference floor. All these motions and discussion was really heartening but did make me want to stay on another year to be able to work on these new campaigns!

Lastly the highlight of the weekend for me had to be the NUS LGBT awards and Gala Dinner which celebrated 40 years of the NUS LGBT campaign. There were a total of six awards up for grabs and Reading University Student Union LGBT was eligible for 5 of these. I am very proud to say that we were shortlisted for three of them, which means we were in the top five for these categories out of nearly 100 institutions!! These were Campaign of the Year, Society Development Award and LGBT Higher Education Student of the Year. To get this amount of shortlists was incredible; it is testament to the work of the society, the amazing people in it and the lengths we have all come. You should all feel so proud of yourself and I know we are only going to get better year on year.

Ken Smailes
LGBT President and RUSU LGBT Student Officer