On 27 November 2014, the Channel Island charity Liberate (supported by Trans* Jersey) is holding its first Rainbow Mufti Day and they are encouraging businesses, government offices, schools, places of worship, clubs and associations in the islands to get involved. Liberate are asking all Channel Island workplaces to fly a rainbow flag or allow their employees, members or pupils to dress in brightly coloured clothes to show the world that the islands support equality.
This year, Jersey has introduced the first of its anti-discrimination laws that protects all islanders’ from discrimination on the basis of race. Next year, the law will be extended to offer protection on the grounds of gender, sexual orientation and gender reassignment. Following that, protection for age and disability will be introduced. Liberate’s call for Jersey and Guernsey to show their support for their employees, members and pupils no matter what their race, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, belief, age or disability is, therefore, timely.
It is also no coincidence that the day marks the anniversary of, San Francisco city supervisor, Harvey Milk‘s assassination in 1978. Milk was an early campaigner for equal rights for the gay community of the city and the first openly gay US citizen to be elected to public office. Thankfully, we live in a more enlightened age now and there are many LGBTQ people in public life. However, inequalities for minorities within society still exist and Liberate is prompting Channel Islanders consider some of these on 27 November 2014 and to then take steps to make changes that make their workplace more inclusive.Although the rainbow flag is strongly associated with the LGBTQ community, its symbolic meaning is one of inclusion and equality for all. It was designed by San Franciscan, Gilbert Baker in 1978 and has undergone several revisions since. The modern flag has six predominant stripes, each colour carrying a different meaning: Red – Life. Orange – Healing. Yellow – Sunlight. Green – Nature. Blue – Serenity or harmony. Violet – Spirituality.
Liberate are hoping to make Rainbow Mufti Day an annual event so, if you don’t have a rainbow flag, why not get one this year that can be used again, and again! Flags can be obtained by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. We have a supply of 5ft x 3ft flags for £5.00 and 3ft x 2ft flags for £4.00 each (the price includes a small donation to Liberate’s funds). We can also order other sizes if your flag pole requires it!
If you would like to raise money to help Liberate’s work, why not take up a collection from those not wearing something brightly coloured on 27 November or bake rainbow cakes to sell? To find out more about Liberate’s work and how to donate, please visit: www.liberate.gg
Liberate hopes you will show your colours on 27 November 2014 with others across the islands by joining in this initiative.