Politics school for LGBTIs begins before Turkish general election

Thursday, February 26, 2015
As the general elections approach, Social Policies, Gender Identity and Sexual Orientation Studies Association has begun its “In school, at work, in the parliament: LGBTIs are everywhere!” campaign.
SPoD LGBTI representatives visited the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) Istanbul Municipal Branch to inform them of the campaign. SPoD LGBTI aims to make LGBTI rights visible in the 2015 general elections to held on June 7 and its Politics School is set to begin this week.
Social Policies, Gender Identity and Sexual Orientation Studies Association’s Politics School will have its first session on Saturday, 28 February 2015 in Istanbul. The Politics School, which aims to strengthen lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, and intersex individuals in the political arena and to make LGBTI rights visible in the 2015 general elections, will run until 4 March 2015.
The third annual Politics School will inform LGBTIs of political participation mechanisms, conduct presentations and workshops to encourage active political participation, and plan future political representation and participation activities. The school aims to involve participants in campaigns and monitoring for the general elections in their own cities. The subjects to be covered are: Democracy and freedoms, queer democracy, participation methods in decision-making mechanisms, civil society in law-making processes, LGBTI movement’s history and political participation, political parties and rights-based policies, gender focused budgets, LGBTI focused social policies, LGBTI rights in local politics, organizing election campaigns and election monitoring.
Visits to parties
SPoD LGBTI has started visiting political parties to inform them of their “In school, at work, in the parliament: LGBTIs are everywhere!” campaign for the general elections. SPoD LGBTI activists conducted their first visit to the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) and met with HDP’s Istanbul Co-President Ayse Erdem.
The meeting took place in the party’s Beyoglu headquarters. SPoD LGBTI’s Sezen Yalcin, Erdal Partog and Mehmet Akin explained the campaign, which will last until June, to Istanbul Co-President Ayse Erdem. They discussed what SPoD LGBTI can do with HDP’s candidates for Istanbul within the scope of this campaign and the Party’s agenda for LGBTI rights in the election campaigns.
Sezen Yalcin
SPoD Political Representation and Participation Coordinator Sezen Yalcin emphasized that the campaign would function independently from political parties and that this campaign serves to bring LGBTI rights to the parliament. HDP’s Istanbul Co-President Erdem said HDP supports LGBTI rights and declared that they will support SPoD’s campaign in Istanbul. 
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