Trevor Tutu: LGBTI equality is one of my father’s most important fights

Trevor Tutu

Trevor Tutu

Archbishop Desmond Tutu’s son has described his father’s efforts to liberate the LGBTI community as one of his most important struggles.

On Thursday, Trevor Tutu accepted the 2016 Chair Award from the International Gay & Lesbian Travel Association (IGLTA) in Cape Town.

The organisation is hosting its annual global conference in the city. The award is presented to “an individual or business that has made the world a more welcoming place for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender travellers”.

An emotional Tutu told the audience that unfortunately his 84-year-old father was unable to attend and receive the award personally because of ill health.

He thanked IGLTA and the LGBTI community on behalf of the family and asserted that the journey to LGBTI equality was a vital one.

“You would have thought that racism would have been the hardest fight in the world that my father would have had…” he said.

Tutu explained that equally as important was the abuse of people because of their sexual orientation and gender identity.

Archbishop Desmond Tutu's

Archbishop Desmond Tutu

“Sexual orientation is what we are born with. Only when we have liberated ourselves from treating it as the other will all our problems disappear.

“This is the real fight; the fight that we have to win to become the human beings we were mean to be,” he said.

Now retired, Desmond Tutu is one of the world’s most high profile religious leaders to vocally support LGBTI equality.

He’s criticised African states for targeting people on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity and has said he would rather go to hell than worship a God who is homophobic.

The IGLTA Convention, taking place until 16 April, is believed to be the first international LGBTI business event to be held in Africa.

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