The very first Scottish LGBTI awards will take place on September 10, hosted by advocacy group Equality Network.
The awards will honour individuals and organizations who contributed to the progress and wellbeing of the LGBTI community over the last year.
This year is a historical one for progress in the country. In 1980 – 35 years ago – homosexuality was decriminalized in Scotland. It’s been 20 years since Scotland’s first Pride March.
Fifteen years have passed since Section 28, which raised the age of consent for gay people, was repealed.
‘The Scottish LGBTI Awards will provide an opportunity to celebrate the advances we made, and inspiring work of those that make a positive difference,’ Scott Cuthbertson, development coordinator for the Equality Network, said in a statement.
Award categories include: ‘Equality Initiative of the Year’; ‘Media Outlet of the Year’; and ‘Politician of the Year’, for which Nicola Sturgeon, first minister for Scotland, is shortlisted.
Journalists Alan Jenkins and Lorraine Kelly are also shortlisted for ‘Journalist of the Year’ – the latter for her hihg-profile interviews with transgender people, including the first ever transgender woman to serve openly as an officer in the British Army, Hannah Winterbourne.
Karen Dunbar, an openly gay Scottish comedian, will host the awards.
Speaking of the importance of recognising the people who contribute to the community, she said: ‘It’s vital that we celebrate the people who have made a difference to the lives of LGBTI people here in Scotland.
‘I’m chuffed to bits.’