Youth work has an important role to play http://www.hookupdate.net/alt-com-review/ in supporting young people in their coming out process. If a young person decides to come out to a youth worker close to them, the youth worker should be prepared to listen, to demonstrate empathy and understanding, and to keep an open mind. The young person is sharing something very personal and very important. If a youth worker is uncertain of what to say, or thinks that the young person needs further advice, they should point them to services that provide specific support and counselling to LGBT+ people.
The roots of organised LGBT+ movements can be traced back to the 1920s and 1930s, with the development of an urban gay and lesbian culture 59 . In the Netherlands, in 1946, gay men – and later lesbian women – got together under the nickname ‘The Shakespeare Club’, and then as an organisation called C.O.C. This stood for the ‘Centre for Culture and Leisure’, a cover name initially adopted after its foundation. C.O.C. is known as the oldest Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender organisation in the world.
In the USA, the first attempts to set up a lesbian and gay organisation can be traced back to 1950 in Los Angeles, when a small group of men set up the Mattachine Society. Mostly male in membership, the Society was joined in 1955 by a lesbian organisation based in San Francisco, called the Daughters of Bilitis. In the 1950s, these organisations remained small, but they established chapters in several cities and published magazines that became a beacon of hope for readers.
The beginning of a gay political movement is today often traced back to 27 June 1969, and a raid by the New York City police on a Greenwich Village gay bar, The Stonewall Inn. Contrary to expectations, the patrons of the bar fought back, provoking three nights of rioting in the area, accompanied by the appearance of ‘gay power’ slogans on the buildings. Almost overnight, a massive grassroots gay liberation movement was born. Owing much to the radical protest of African-Americans, women, and anti-war protesters of the 1960s, gays challenged all forms of hostility and punishment which had been meted out by society. Choosing to ‘come out of the closet’ and publicly proclaim their identity, they gave substantial impetus to a wider movement for social change.
In general, the same developments can be seen in Western European countries, where the lesbian and gay world is no longer an underground subculture, but a well-organised community, particularly in larger cities. In a number of places, openly gay candidates run for elections.
This often involves gay businesses, political clubs, social service agencies, community centres and religious congregations bringing people together
In the course of these struggles, homosexual men and lesbian women came to realise that they did not and would not conform to dominant social gender roles. Homosexual people not only challenged the heterosexual norm, but also challenged the images of how men and women should behave, what they should look like and what roles they should fulfil in society. These confrontations with repressive social norms have been carried out in spectacular ways that have increased the visibility of the struggles, such as a ‘kiss–in’ of lesbian women on a German town square. They have also often used traditional political approaches, such as lobbying and advocacy. The presence of publicly ‘out’ lesbians and gays in politics, and organisations as the International Lesbian and Gay Association (ILGA) or the International Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Youth and Students Organisation (IGLYO) have contributed substantially to the inclusion of LGBT issues in discussions on equal opportunities, human rights and general social policy.