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Young homos can fight bigotry, says nun

Thu 14 Jun 2007 In: New Zealand Daily News

New Zealand's young homosexuals must be given the opportunity and responsibility of picking up the fight against continuing secular and religious homophobia, says the newly-honoured Sister Paula Brettkelly. Made a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit for over two decades of human rights work, which has notably included advocating for gays and lesbians, and people with HIV, Catholic nun Brettkelly believes there is still much work to be done in fighting anti-gay bigotry and intolerance. While acknowledging the decades of work by an older generation, she says she'd like to see "young gays and lesbians in their early twenties allowed, encouraged and challenged to take charge of the fight against prejudice." She believes there are many ways ways in which homophobia has yet to be identified and addressed and that it is young people who will identify needs and address them. In the late 1980s and 90s Brettkelly was a valuable strategist and campaigner for fair treatment of people with HIV and equal rights for gays and lesbians, having overcome those parts of her own Catholic upbringing which had taught her to despise homosexuals as sinners.     Ref: (j)

Credit: News Staff

First published: Thursday, 14th June 2007 - 12:00pm

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