by Lu Thornton
“I love and only love the fairer sex and thus beloved by them in turn, my heart revolts from any love but theirs."
— Anne Lister, Monday 29 January 1821 [Halifax]
To begin with, I picked the quotation above because my Nana used to volunteer at Shibden Hall and Anne Lister was the first lesbian I became aware of and the first time I actually began to consider what my sexuality meant to me and the outside world. As a result, Lesbian Visibility Week is crucial because it allows lesbian voices to be heard and their experiences to be recognised. Lesbians have been marginalised and silenced for many years, and their tales have frequently been erased from history. Take, for example, Anne Lister, whose diaries were kept until 1982, when Halifax-born historian Helena Whitbread uncovered them and spent six years deciphering Anne's code. Lesbian Visibility Week reminds us that lesbian women are a vital part of our society, and their voices and experiences are worthy of recognition. The annual week-long celebration, which runs from April 24 to April 30th, is an opportunity to highlight the obstacles that lesbians confront and raise awareness about issues that impact them.
As a Green Party member and one of the Young Greens' Events Officers, I understand how critical it is for progressive action to take place so that Lesbians like myself can live more comfortably in society. Lesbian Visibility Week raises awareness about the difficulties that lesbians experience. Lesbian women are frequently subjected to discrimination and prejudice in society. Because of their sexual orientation, many lesbians face barriers to healthcare, housing, and work. Lesbian Visibility Week contributes to a more open and welcoming society by highlighting these problems.
Another significant component of Lesbian Visibility Week, which I discovered at a young age, is the celebration of lesbian culture and history. Lesbian women have made major contributions to every sector of society, from artists and authors to activists and pioneers. There have been and continue to be many more lesbians throughout history and modern-day society, but their contributions have frequently been forgotten or obliterated. Lesbian Visibility Week allows us to recognise and celebrate these efforts, as well as guarantee that lesbian women are included in our communal history going forward. Among the numerous outstanding Lesbian activists in the Green Party are Lucy Pegg, Lisa Stone, Adi Daly-Gourdialising, and Helen Dixon.
Lesbian Visibility Week is especially important in empowering and supporting lesbian women, which the Green Party and the LGBTIQA+ Greens always push for when advocating LGBTIQA+ rights. Lesbian Visibility Week, on a larger scale than the Green Party, gives a forum for lesbian views to be heard, builds a sense of community, and creates solidarity among the lesbian community. It also encourages lesbian women to be proud of their identities and to celebrate the diversity within the lesbian community.
Finally, as we fight for equality and justice for everyone, it is critical that we recognise the importance of lesbian visibility and continue to celebrate the lives and accomplishments of lesbian women.