Blog Post: Why Pride matters to Hands Up

It’s June! That’s pride month.

Happy Pride Celebrations to you: whoever you are, whoever you love.

None of us in hands up identify as LGBTQ+ but we support the hell out of that community, the movement and these celebrations.

This inclusive attitude is something I’ve held as a value in my career for a long time. It is a cornerstone for the way I work.

If you feel included in a classroom, then you feel more comfortable. If you feel comfortable, it helps you create the interpersonal learning relationships that can be transformational in your education (in all its forms, not just schools).

A teenager called Amie who I used to teach asked another teacher (Oli, drums) and I to form a band to play on the bill of a Charity Battle of the Bands she was setting up. We knew a colleague’s husband who worked at a different school played guitar so we roped him in (Rob, now bass).

We played two covers and it was so much fun that we started hands up, adding Rob’s friend Jim (guitar) to complete the line-up.

Amie is bisexual. Performing and attending that Battle of The Bands were more Bisexual people and others who are Gay, Lesbian and also people identifying as Pansexual. Over the two year journey of hands up being a thing, we’ve seen these people at shows and we are delighted that you see our shows as inclusive, safe spaces to come and have fun.

Most recently we (as No Name Promotions) put in a show to raise money for Just Like Us, an LGBT youth charity that is local to us.

It saw the stage being shared by LGBT+ performers and non-LGBT allies. (Amie performed a solo ukelele set under the name Your Dress Code Sucks – it’s nice to pay it back!).

Also playing that night were another band you wouldn’t have met without promoting equality and inclusion at our shows. The young LGBT+ champions State of Mind. don’t sleep on seeing this band play! They are the future of our scene.

The fact that some people may feel they can’t or won’t go to shows, or even go out at all to enjoy themselves because of who they are and who they love is a horrible and saddening thing.

So we’re here with you LGBT+ friends, family and fans. If you feel worried, anxious or concerned about coming to any of our shows; we are always available to discuss what we can do to help ensure that you feel safe and secure. Reach out, speak to us on facebook messenger or email if we can do anything to help.

We’ll be here all month and way beyond that, sticking up for you because we believe who you love will never determine what we think of you.

Happy Pride Month!

Love who you want to Love. We hope you can feel comfortable to do that in public and at any live show we’re a part of.

Ben and hands up

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