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Homosexual Equality

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Homosexual Equality

The Campaign for Homosexual Equality is given airtime in the first ever community access series on British TV

Factual TV 1974 50 mins

Overview

In 1974 the London group of the Campaign for Homosexual Equality (founded in 1969) was offered the 13th and final slot in London Weekend Television’s community access series Speak for Yourself. It attempted to show that lesbian women and gay men were as ‘normal’ as everyone else but at the same time the programme didn’t avoid portraying the virulent homophobia that existed in British society.

Speak for Yourself was a community access series and the first on British television to allow lesbians and gay men to make their own programme. It was put together in 1974 by the London group of the Campaign for Homosexual Equality (CHE) but screened in the ‘graveyard’ slot on Sunday evening at 11.20pm in the London area only. It was scripted by Jackie Forster, a journalist and broadcaster, who was one of the few public faces of lesbianism in the 1970s, and Roger Baker, the London organiser of CHE. They put the case that lesbians and gay men were responsible people and should not be objects of derision, cheap humour and persecution.