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Durham University

Gender and Law at Durham

Sexuality, gender identity and equality

A number of GLAD members in the Law School and School of Applied Social Sciences (SASS) have research interests in the broad fields of sexuality and equality.  These researchers are especially interested in the relationship between law and lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans and queer politics. The undergraduate module Law, Gender and Society draws on this expertise, with a focus on the legal regulation of same-sex partnerships and trans rights.

June 2012 - Sexuality, Gender Identity and Faith

This one day event, funded and hosted by Gender & Law at Durham (GLAD) in June 2012, brought together academic and non-academic speakers to offer new insights into the lived experiences of LGBT people of faith, and the issues involved in fostering greater cohesion between LGBT and faith communities.

May 2011 - Professor Clare McGlynn comments in The Guardian's Women and Equality debate 

Professor McGlynn has commented in The Guardian on the Coalition Government's record on legal issues and women. Professor McGlynn suggests that though many of the Government's cuts aren't labelled as affecting women, "when you look at the detail that's exactly what they are ... as a feminist, [she continues] I believe women's victimisation and discrimination is a societal issue and not an individual one, so it needs a societal response. "

May 2011 - Neil Cobb delivers plenary at 2011 Durham County Council IDAHO conference

Neil Cobb was invited to deliver the plenary presentation at Durham County Council's International Day against Homophobia (IDAHO) conference, which took place at Durham County Hall on 17th May 2011. Neil used the plenary to outline recent plans by the coalition government to impose Specific Equality Duties on public bodies to support the General Public Sector Equality Duty created by the Equality Act 2010, and the impact these Specific Duties could have on LGBT communities

February 2011 - GLAD Conversation with Stephen Whittle OBE

GLAD hosted its fifth conversation on with Stephen Whittle OBE, Professor of Equalities Law at Manchester Metropolitan University, and Vice-President of the United Kingdom trans activist organisation Press for Change. Press for Change has been instrumental in securing legal protections for trans people, including recognition under the Gender Recognition Act 2004. The conversation was a great opportunity to find out more about trans activism and law reform from one of the most important figures in trans politics today, in the UK and internationally.

January 2011 - Coalition Government responds to equality duty consultation

The Coalition Government has released its response to the consultation, and amended regulations, together with ECHR guidance on the new duties. It notes many of the concerns raised in GLAD's submission, including the move away from national standards for compliance with the Equality Duty, and enforcement mechanisms.

The Government's response 

You can read more about the GLAD's submission to the Consultation and the Coalition Government's response on Inherently Human  

December 2010 - GLAD members submit evidence to government consultation on implementation of Equality Duty

In June 2010 the coalition government began a public consultation on its proposals for implementing the Equality Duty under the Equality Act 2010. Gender & Law at Durham (GLAD) organised a workshop in December 2010 in which the consultation paper was analysed, together with the draft secondary regulations the government had proposed to implement the Equality Duty. Particular attention was given to the effect of the proposals on equality for women, and lesbian, gay and transgender people. Read our submission.

February 2010 - Neil Cobb awarded British Academy funding

Neil Cobb has been awarded a Small Grant to support an empirical research project on the impact of Crown Prosecution Service Hate Crime Scrutiny Panels (HCSPs). HCSPs are part of the CPS' equality and diversity and community engagement activities, and are an opportunity for members of communities to scrutinise closed hate crime case files and advise CPS on ways to improve its practices. Neil is currently Independent Legal Advisor to the CPS north-east England Homophobic/ Transphobic HCSP. His project will involve visits to six other HCSPs to observe their work and interview panel Facilitators and Independent Legal Advisors.

May 2008 - Sexuality, Hatred and Law seminar

This one-day seminar coincided with, and contributed to, the broader debates surrounding the (then) proposed criminal offence prohibiting the stirring up of hatred on the grounds of sexual orientation. The proposed offence, following the enactment of the Racial and Religious Hatred Act in 2006, prohibiting the same conduct in the context of religious belief, brought to the fore broader debates about the appropriate ambit of freedom of speech, the role of law within society, and the ability of the law in a plural, democratic society to accommodate sharply differing and strongly-held perspectives on issues of sexuality and religious belief. The seminar was attended by civil libertarians and human rights lawyers, as well as those with an interest in law, gender and sexuality, and those who approach legal-moral issues from a religious perspective.