How to unlearn homophobia

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Have you ever heard someone say ‘that’s so gay’ and had that icky feeling in your gut? This happened to me on the bus recently and I found myself confronted by an ethical and moral dilemma. When do you give nothing, and when do you speak up?

A person in the UC community also noted to me the irony of the saying being used in a conversation during a te reo class – a context on campus which actively encourages inclusiveness. People think that’s not really bad ‘on the scale of things’ but passive homophobia can be just as damaging as an aggressive homophobic verbal attack because it inhibits the rights of people to feel free and confident to be who they are, where they are. This person had no idea who they might be sitting beside and how it might affect them.

Friday 17 August was the day of silence. The National Day of Silence is a day of action in which students across the country vow to take a form of silence to call attention to the silencing effect of homophobic, biphobic and transphobic bullying, name-calling and harassment in schools. The goal of the Day of Silence is to make schools safer for all students, regardless of sexual orientation and gender identity/expression. Often times it is the casual homophobia that causes the most damage, like the saying ‘that’s so gay.’

I encourage you to download and print posters to put up on your noticeboards. Download posters here>

You can also check out the LGBTQIA+ info page.

Please tell students and staff about the new safe space on campus for rainbow communities – Locke Room 109a. The space was granted to QCanterbury by the College of Arts, and named the ‘Robin Duff Room’ in honour of a former UC student leader who poured his heart and soul into advocating for LGBTQIA+ people on our campus and beyond during the years surrounding the Homosexual Law Reform of 1986.

Join the Postgraduate Advisory Group

Kia ora Postgrad students,

Change is afoot. There has been much talk over the past couple of years about setting up a postgrad system that will give the postgrad community a stronger voice to influence change on campus. This is now a reality! The UCSA is setting up a Postgraduate Advisory Group and we need you.

We need at least one motivated student from each College to begin this system. If you would like to be a part of the change you want to see on campus and are inspired to push postgrad issues to make a positive change for your fellow students then head to the UCSA website for more information and to fill out a form registering your interest.

We will be holding a Q&A session on Monday 11 September, 3pm – 4pm in the Shilling Club. Come along, enjoy free coffee and nibbles and ask all those burning questions about the new Postgraduate Advisory Group.

In the meantime if you have any questions please feel free to contact me on

Read more about the Postgraduate Advisory Group here>

Thomas Gillman
UCSA Executive – Postgraduate Representative

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Zumba Glow Dance Party – we don’t sweat, we glow!

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Want to do something a little different on a Friday night?  Come join our Zumba Glow Dance Party!

On Friday 22 September, we’ll be turning off the regular lights, and turning on the party and UV lights to have a glowing Zumba dance party!

There will be five Zumba instructors to keep you going through 90mins of fun Zumba dance, and your friends (or new ones!) to help you put on glow paint. This is a special event to celebrate Spring and the return to warmer times!

Tickets are just $5 for members of the UC RecCentre, or $10 for non-members,  so yes, anyone can come! (as long as they’re over 16yrs old).   Don’t miss out, pop over to the RecCentre today to buy your ticket from reception.

Would you like to win a ticket for you and a friend?  We’ve got two prize packs to give away for Insider’s Guide readers, each containing two glow drink bottles and two tickets to the Zumba Glow Dance Party.

To enter, simply comment below with your favourite Zumba song, or if you’ve never tried Zumba, your ‘go to song’ that motivates you to move!

Entries close Sunday 10 September, 2017.   Winners will be contacted by 18 September 2017, and must agree to have their names published on this thread.

UC RecCentre

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