Channel Islands Pride physical celebrations in Jersey cancelled

Photo: Pride volunteers 2021

It is with sincere regret that the Channel Islands Pride Committee have chosen to cancel the 2021 Channel Islands Pride march and public entertainment, which were planned to take place in Jersey on Saturday 21 August.

The Pride Committee have worked hard to ensure the event could take place, but now it is simply not possible to operate a large-scale public event, given the increasing number of active COVID-19 cases in Jersey and changing restrictions on Islanders.  

Pride Director, Christian May, commented:

“We want to host a Pride that is inclusive, welcoming, and above all safe. Although we have planned extensive safety measures, neither we, nor our sponsors, would want to proceed with an event that could pose a risk to attendees. I am very sorry for the Islanders and visitors who will be disappointed by this outcome. Safety has always been paramount in the organisation of Pride, and this is the right decision; albeit a very difficult one to make.”

Liberate in Guernsey are still planning to host a smaller event on 21 August 2021 (more details here), and Channel Islands Pride are investigating the possibility of offering both Islands a live online streaming celebration – including musical entertainment – and at-home Pride packs; in order to continue the spirit of celebration and reflection that underpins Pride. Further details will be made available as soon as possible.

The Committee are also asking all Islanders to mark Pride Day on 21 August by flying rainbow flags, creating their own rainbow flags at home, and posting their flag photos online with the hashtag #CIPride2021.

Mr May said:

“I would like to thank all our sponsors and partners for the continued support they have offered us, as we have worked through the increased logistical difficulties of planning a Pride event in light of COVID-19. Their support for Liberate and our Island’s wider diverse communities is hugely appreciated.

“We are absolutely committed to building a bigger and better Channel Islands Pride in 2022 – one that brings together our Island communities and also provides significant economic benefit by making the Channel Islands pride destinations of choice. Working in collaboration with colleagues at Liberate Guernsey we are proposing a week-long Channel Islands Pride Festival that will span Jersey, Guernsey and the other islands in early September 2022.”

International Day of Persons with Disabilities 2020

Photo: the public entrance of the States Chamber in Jersey

Jersey’s public buildings are being independently assessed to determine how suitable they are for people with disabilities to access.

Liberate Jersey, an equality and diversity charity, is conducting audits of the Government’s property portfolio.

So far, the Jersey Library, States building, Central Market and the Opera House have been assessed against a checklist of more than 100 building criteria including car parking, lifts, lighting and handrails.

Liberate’s Accès Scheme delivers audits which enable organisations to meet their obligations under the Disabilities Law. The audit’s results are allocated a blue, orange or green status depending on the level of improvement that might be needed. Training is given to employees on how to improve inclusion for people with disabilities.

Paul McGinnety, Director of Customer and Local Services said: “The work Liberate Jersey are doing supports government’s Disability Strategy which focusses on ensuring disabled Islanders are able to have greater access to public buildings and the services they provide. The work is ongoing, and we welcome the findings of the audits.”

Vic Tanner Davy from Liberate Jersey said: “Today is the United Nations as International Day of Persons With Disabilities, so it’s an appropriate time to remember how important it is for people with disabilities to access our public buildings.

“We know that the audit will not be without challenges, particularly in listed buildings. For example, when assessing a building like the States Chamber there will be significant barriers in place. Making reasonable adjustments to remove these barriers aims to provide everyone with equal opportunities to engage fully in the public life of the Island.”

National Hate Crime Awareness Week 2020

Poster: stop hate U K, hate doesn't belong here

This year’s National Hate Crime Awareness Week will take place from 10– 17 October 2020.

Jersey is a multi-cultural island and whilst some celebrate this rich diversity, others can directly or indirectly affect people’s enjoyment of life by acting on their prejudice, discriminate or even commit crime motivated by hatred toward people who are different to them. Here are some of the communities or different strands of diversity that can be affected by hate:

Race                         Religion                       Gender                      Disability                        Age                  

Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity/Expression, and Sex Characteristics                       

The States of Jersey Police will be promoting the Hate Crime Awareness Week on their social media platform and have a number of activities planned in schools, businesses and across the community. The Police recognise that hate crimes and incidents are under reported and would appreciate anything you can do to support any victims of hate crime you encounter and encourage engagement either directly with the Police or reporting indirectly and in confidence via Stop Hate UK.

Some hate crimes or incidents may not be so obvious and may happen in your workplace or perhaps socially. I hope you join us in standing together and putting a clear message out across your network that there is no place for hate in Jersey, thus promoting a safe place for all. You can do this by posting some of the international hashtags below on your social media accounts, learning more about the subject and talking with those around you about diversity and hate – the more we talk openly about hate, the more visibly unacceptable it will become.

#NationalHCAW                       #WeStandTogether                  #NoPlaceForHate                #SafePlaceForAll                        #SpreadLoveNotHate                            #StopHateStartsHere

For further information regarding promoting the week, please visit and You can use published ideas on how to participate, print off and display some posters and find resources regarding this matter – you can make a difference in stopping hate.

Accès scheme audits accessibility in the Co-Op

Photo: Liberate staff auditing the Co-Op for accessibility

Liberate are delighted that The Channel Islands Co-Operative Society have signed up to the Accès scheme. The scheme is designed to help organisations to meet their obligations under the law by offering an accessibility audit of their premises and training for employees on how to improve inclusion for people with disabilities, whether they are customers or employees.

Paddy Haversham-Quaid, CXO of Liberate, said: “A number of organisations have said to us that they aren’t sure what a ‘reasonable’ adjustment is for their business, and many fear that adjustments will cost them a lot of money. Accès provides an independent view that helps organisations navigate the process of making those adjustments.”

There are three parts to the scheme: over the next few weeks, Liberate will be auditing all Co-Op stores with our Accessibility Ambassadors to ensure that they are accessible and inclusive for people with disabilities; we will then train all staff on disability discrimination and how to make reasonable adjustments; and, finally, the Co-Op will get a visit from a mystery shopper – one of our RAMS (reasonable adjustment mystery shoppers).

Dave Chalk, Chief Operating and Risk Officer at the Co-Op, said: “As a community retailer we have always prided ourselves on being accessible for all and are delighted to continue our partnership with Liberate, by being the first retailer to sign up to their new Accès scheme. Accès is aimed at increasing education around accessibility, and Liberate will provide training for our colleagues, as well as working with their Accessibility Ambassadors to review our store estate and provide input in how we can improve access for all of our members and customers.

“We welcome the audit and will continue to keep our stores accessible for all islanders with disabilities.”

Liberate are also reminding Jersey organisations this week that they have until 1 September 2020 to make reasonable adjustments to the physical features in their premises in order to make them accessible for people with disabilities.

Organisations wanting to find out more about the scheme can email or click here.

Watch ITV Channel’s report here

Why #blacklivesmatter

Photo: A black lives matter protest banner

Over the last few days there has been a polarising of opinion on social media regarding the #blacklivesmatter protests. The lack of social distancing, violence and vandalism seen in the UK and abroad has provoked people to dismiss protestors as unthinking sheep, to condemn the protests as disrespectful to frontline COVID-19 workers and, at the extremes, to issue ‘keyboard warrior’ death threats against all those who take part in the protests – whether they do so peaceful or not.

For some the criminal actions of a small minority of protestors are the excuse they need to mentally disengage from the reasons why the thousands of other people are protesting. This is perilous. However much you abhor, regret or feel outraged by the pictures on the news of Whitehall monuments graffiti-ed it is important to look behind those images to understand why people are so moved to take to the streets, despite social distancing, and why the #blacklivesmatter movement has gained global traction now.

When the history books are written the answer will be a complex mix of factors, not least of which will be recent UK scandals, such as Grenfell Tower and the Windrush generation deportations. What is certain is that #blacklivesmatter is bigger than one man, George Floyd. For his family and friends it will remain very much about him, for others the manner of his death has become a symbol of how black lives are still seen as less than white lives.

In the UK the government’s paper into why BAME people have been disproportionately affected by COVID-19 has not yet delivered an answer and is a long way from delivering a set of actions to address the inevitable findings that BAME people are some of the lowest paid workers in the UK, fulfilling frontline roles, living in substandard, overcrowded, unsecure accommodation, with poor underlying health. This week at a Downing Street briefing Alok Sharma MP was asked why the ‘community engagement’ section of the report had been removed and when it would be included. He dodged the question.

I attended the protest in People’s Park and was two metres away from a black family that had two health care workers in it. I don’t know their personal motivations for being there, but I do know that Britain’s health service could not function without them and thousands like them and that we owe it to them to ensure that BAME voices are part of the COVID-19 investigation – not as a tick box ‘community engagement’ exercise, but genuinely leading the investigation. It is critical that people from BAME backgrounds are part of any group making decisions involving BAME lives, but all too often they (and other minority groups) are an after-thought, if their inclusion happens at all. This lack of inclusion goes to the heart of the #blacklivesmatter protests.

If we don’t place a value on diversity in our society and organisations we will continue to fall short. The question of civic statues highlights this issue perfectly. One person’s worthy philanthropist is another person’s slave trader. Without diversity within the group taking decisions about who should be honoured you end up with statues that reflect a narrow view of history and tend to look just like the group making the decision of who to honour.

At the protest in People’s Park, which was socially distanced, well-organised, done with the permission and co-operation of the authorities, and respectful to Jersey’s BAME community, the speakers were thoughtful and thought-provoking. One speaker threw down a challenge to Jersey’s leaders to sit down with them and talk about what it means to be a black person in Jersey. I hope that this challenge will be accepted and the opportunity it affords made the most of.

The opportunity to connect with someone other than your immediate circle is rare and vital for our growth as individuals. Unless we take these opportunities to talk and listen we won’t find out that we share a common humanity, and without that connection we will forever be locked into an ever-descending spiral to the bottom on social media.

Black lives matter, but to understand why #blacklivesmatter we must stop the ‘white noise’ on social media and really listen to the experience of life in Britain for people from BAME backgrounds. Only then do we stand a chance of making the changes necessary to address the inequalities that the BAME community and other minorities experience daily and that compels people onto the streets to protest.

by Vic Tanner Davy


Photo: Liberation Day 1945 crowds outside the Pomme d'Or

As we celebrate the 75th anniversary of the Liberation of the Channel Islands and the start of the end of WWII, and as we continue to be living in a restricted way due to coronavirus, it seems a good moment to consider what freedom means. The Arthouse Jersey project The Face of Liberation posed the question of islanders, ‘What does freedom mean to you?’, as they took their photos earlier this year for a huge photo montage. A huge photo and a huge question.

Liberate’s vision is for an inclusive society where all citizens of the Channel Islands are accepted equally by government, organisations, society and themselves regardless of their personal characteristics. If you cannot access the education you deserve, if you cannot get the job or promotion you are qualified for, if you cannot register the birth of your biological child, if you cannot have your identity legally recognised, if you cannot live without fearing assault, if you cannot enter premises on the island because no consideration has been given to your needs, if you cannot feed, clothe or house yourself, how free are you? And, how free is the society in which you live?

For us as a charity, then, freedom means nobody being left behind in our islands. Easy to say, much harder to achieve. Our work involves holding up a mirror to government, corporations, charities and individuals and asking the question, ‘Is this what inclusivity really looks like?’. It is easy to be complacent when you live in a democracy that is economically rich and to assume that everyone is doing as well as you. The COVID-19 crisis has demonstrated the fault lines in British society in a starker way than any other national happening in recent times.

This week Liberate was due to be part of a human rights conference in Jersey that would have seen some inspirational international speakers visit the island to discuss how far we, as an island, have come from Liberation Day to today, and how far we have yet to travel.

When the world saw the horrors of the Second World War it made a promise. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights was adopted by the United Nations General Assembly on 10 December 1948. It set out a common standard of achievements for all peoples and all nations and, for the first time, fundamental human rights to be universally protected in order that future generations should not have to suffer what millions had suffered between 1939 and 1945.

The Declaration remains an ambition that 70 years on has not been fully realised. Countries still go to war, commit genocide, sponsor terrorism, sanction torture, violate human rights, silence free speech, rig elections and deny citizens access to basic essentials. This will continue to happen until populations – everyone, you and me – speak up and take a stand against those who profit from the denial of others’ freedoms.

As individuals in Jersey, this means engaging with politics and electing those who seek to unite not divide us, telling our leaders in the workplace that we want to work for ethical organisations who put people before profit or power, intervening where we see people being treated unfairly in society, and volunteering our personal resources to help those who need our support. The UN’s 17 Global Goals provides organisations and individuals with ways to start acting on inequality in human rights.

The world was forever changed 75 years ago. Britain was not the same country in 1945 as it had been in 1939. The joyous celebrations of VE Day and Liberation gave way to a period of grieving, hardship and austerity in the years that followed. 75 years on and the crisis we are living through is also likely to give way to a period of severe deprevation. We are going to need to tackle the post-COVID period with a determination, similar to that shown 75 years ago, that the world will be a better place following the death and hardship we have endured. It will take our collective effort to ensure that nobody is left behind and that we truly are a society in which everyone feels free.

Liberate lauches counselling support service in response to COVID-19 emergency

Photo: a young man talking to a counsellor

Liberate is launching its new counselling support service, but its focus has changed…

Like many other charities, Liberate’s income for 2020 dropped off a cliff edge three weeks ago. It was there one day and gone the next! Since then Liberate has been looking for ways in which it can use its resources to support the island’s effort to manage COVID-19.

Vic Tanner Davy, CEO of Liberate, said: “We had been working on a new counselling offering as part of our HIV work and it was ready to launch when the coronavirus outbreak arrived in Jersey. As we watched the news and heard stories from people struggling with various mental health issues due to the crisis, we realised this was the service that we could repurpose to respond to the islandwide effort.”

The new service is offered to anyone who needs it for no charge. Due to anticipated demand, clients will be offered three sessions of one hour per week over video link or telephone. Liberate aims to assist those experiencing stress, anxiety, panic, depression, grief and other mental health issues due to the conditions imposed by the crisis, such as:

  • Change in routine;
  • Separation from family and friends;
  • Loss of freedom;
  • Being quarantined in a home that is unsafe or hostile;
  • Easier access at home to addictive substances;
  • Taking on more care responsibilities due to a lack of access to regular care for a family member with a disability;
  • Lack of employment/boredom;
  • Job insecurity;
  • Debt;
  • Uncertainty over own disease status;
  • Concern about loved ones being infected;
  • Bereavement.

Liberate hopes that the addition of extra mental health support into Jersey’s system at a low level will provide capacity to mental health professionals higher up the chain to deal with more acute cases. In particular, the ability for mental health professionals in the Health Service to support their colleagues on the frontline, who will need help in the coming weeks to cope with stressors including home pressures, workplace stress and traumatic exposure.

If anyone would like to use the service, they can sign up at

Liberate partners with Les Landes School to launch DIFERA Jnr

Logo: DIFERA Junior

On 31 January 2020, Liberate and Les Landes School are launching the DIFERA Jnr scheme with a day of diversity and inclusivity activities created by the school’s pupils and staff.

DIFERA is Liberate’s accreditation scheme for organisations that has members across the Channel Islands from all business sectors.

Paddy Haversham-Quaid, CXO Liberate, said: “We wanted to include schools in the DIFERA scheme, but knew that the offering to them needed to be a bit different as it had to include students as well as staff. We decided to partner with Les Landes school to pilot a junior variation of the DIFERA scheme as we were aware of the work they were already doing in this area.”

As well as auditing the school as a workplace for its staff, DIFERA Jnr also contains a day of activities for the pupils to encourage them to think about diversity, inclusion, fairness, equality, respect and acceptance in their lives. A staff champions group is also given training that enables them to train their colleagues and gives them material they can use and adapt in their lessons.

Vicki Charlesworth, Headteacher of Les Landes, said: “We were delighted to be asked to be the DIFERA Jnr pilot as we are a school that tries to embed the DIFERA values into everything we do. The year groups have each been asked to work on one letter of DIFERA and the day of activities has developed from there. Les Landes is the first Jersey school to be accredited in Philosophy for Children, and we will be using this framework to facilitate the discussion and enquiry work with the children. DIFERA Junior also supports our Rights Respecting School work; we are committed to promoting children’s rights. We hope that it will be a fun and thought-provoking day for staff and pupils.”

The DIFERA Jnr scheme has the ministerial team’s support and will be rolled out across other primary schools this year. If primary schools would like to find out more about the scheme, they can contact

The development of the scheme’s training material was supported by RBC Wealth Management.

Jersey Pride In Sport Week

Photo: a person tying up their trainers with rainbow laces

Jersey Pride in Sport week is taking place from 3-9 February 2020.

Racism, homophobia, biphobia, transphobia, sexism and other prejudicial language can all too often be heard on the pitch or in the changing room, and gets dismissed as ‘banter’. The words we use matter and make the difference between an inclusive space or one that feels exclusive and intimidating for people from minority groups.

This is why we are asking as many sports people as possible to show their support for ‘sport is for everyone’ by wearing rainbow laces to celebrate Jersey Pride in Sport week, ideally during your sporting activity, or before or after for sports that do not involve shoes or boots requiring laces. Whether you are a school, football or rugby team, cycling or walking group, aerobics or dance class, the free rainbow laces demonstrate your commitment to making sport an inclusive and discrimination-free space.

You can collect your rainbow laces from the offices of Jersey Sport at the FB Fields and EY’s office in Liberation House, Castle Street. Laces will also be handed out during Jersey Sport’s launch of the new Equality, Diversity and Inclusion for Sport and Physical Activity workshop on 5 February 2020.

So, what are you waiting for? Grab a pair of rainbow laces and let’s make this a Pride in Sport week to be proud of! Please share pictures of your team in their rainbow laces across social media using: #JerseyPrideInSport and tagging Instagram: @EYCICareers @JerseySportje Twitter: @EYnews @JerseySport @LiberateJersey Facebook: @EYChannelIslandsCareers @jerseysportofficial @LiberateJersey

Jersey Pride in Sport week is supported by EY: “At EY we believe everyone should be respected for the skills and talents they contribute and the impact they make – not by their race, gender or sexual identity. We are pleased to support this initiative to help make sport everyone’s game.”

Sport really should be for everyone, but there are some groups for whom significant barriers to participation in sport exist. In the UK, more than 55% of LGBTQ+ people are not active enough to maintain good health, 34% of people with a long-term impairment are inactive compared with 21% of those without a disability and 89% of sport participants are from white and 11% from non white  backgrounds.

Changing these statistics requires all of us to understand what we can do make our clubs, teams, schools and associations inclusive.

Jersey Sport’s Equality, Diversity and Inclusion for Sport and Physical Activity workshop launching on 5 February 2020, but repeated throughout the year, has been developed in partnership with Liberate and with the support of EY.

It aims to give players, captains, coaches, referees, umpires, volunteers, club officers and other supporters an introduction to issues around diversity and inclusion, and is as essential for sports clubs and associations as safeguarding, mental health awareness and first aid – which is why it is part of Jersey Sport’s SportsMark Essential scheme. For details of all the scheme workshops, please visit:

Contact Jersey Sport – or 757700 – for more information.

International Day of Persons with Disabilities

Logo: Aksay accreditation scheme

On International Day of Persons with Disabilities (3 December), Liberate are reminding Jersey organisations that they have until 31 August 2020 to make reasonable adjustments to physical features in their premises.

Many organisations have already made adjustments to their provisions, criteria and practices (“PCPs”) and provided auxiliary aids that include people with disabilities in workplaces. Now, with just a few months to go until the two year grace period within the Discrimination (Jersey) Law runs out, organisations need to be making those adjustments to the physical features of workplaces, too.

Paddy Haversham-Quaid, CXO Liberate, said: “A number of organisations have said to us that they aren’t sure what a ‘reasonable’ adjustment is for their business, and many fear that adjustments will cost them a lot of money. This is why we have launched a new scheme called Accès aimed at helping organisations navigate making adjustments to ensure their business is inclusive for people with disabilities.

“We are offering an audit of an organisation’s premises and training to help organisations to understand what is reasonable for their business when it comes to making physical adjustments. We have a group of Accessibility Ambassadors, with different disabilities, who are going to assist us with the audits to demonstrate to organisations, in a practical way, where they can improve.

“Organisations that are audited, make adjustments and undertake the training are given our Accès badge to demonstrate to employees and customers that they take accessibility for Jersey’s disabled community seriously. We hope that the Accès kitemark will become a trusted symbol for people in Jersey with a disability.”

To find out more about Accès, please click here.