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Wednesday 24 February 2021

LGBT History Month: celebrating the work of FDA members

During this LGBT History Month, we look at the work of two FDA members and visible ambassadors for LGBT public servants.

Craig Stephenson

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Former Director of Engagement at Senedd Cymru Craig Stephenson was awarded an OBE in Her Majesty's New Year's Honours List 2021, for Services to the Welsh Parliament and Equality.

Previously an FDA branch officer, Craig founded OUT-NAW, the LGBT network for staff at the then-National Assembly. In 2014, he received the union's Wendy Jones Equality Award, which celebrates exceptional efforts to forward our equality and diversity agenda. Craig received the award for his work as Chair of the staff network and as a senior champion on LGBT issues.

Craig was subsequently named on the Pinc List of individuals who have contributed to LGBT life in Wales. Speaking at the time, his colleagues commended his "selfless approach" and described him as "a true and inspiring role model for others".

Read more about Craig and his work

Ian Buist

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Diplomat and international development civil servant Ian Buist was one of the FDA’s first LGBT campaigners, campaigning tirelessly for social progress and equality.

In putting forward a motion calling for “no discrimination against homosexual officers” to the union’s 1979 delegate conference, Ian ensured that the FDA became one of the first trade unions to campaign for LGBT equality. Speaking after the motion was overwhelmingly carried, he said that colleagues would now know "that if they come out they can count on full support from their colleagues both at local and national level."

Throughout the 1980s Ian played his part in the FDA’s work to abolish the ban on gay and lesbian staff working in the Diplomatic Service. When it was finally overturned in 1991, Ian declared that it had “proved feasible to work a change in public attitudes that would have been unthinkable a few years ago”.

Find out more about Ian’s life and campaigning

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