Series Seven, Episode Two: Coming Out and Staying Visible

Posted on February 12, 2020

Host Julia Streets is joined by BBC presenter Jane Hill and partnership and sponsorship consultant Polly Shute discuss the lack of visibility of gay women in society. They consider why LGBTQ+ networks are failing to support and represent the female members of their community, addressing the central question, ‘Where are the women?’ This wide ranging discussion explores the connotations around language, how identity has changed over time, the reality of the double glass ceiling, what support rising executives need and how corporate and LGBTQ+ networks can become more effective for women, in terms of both gender and intersectional balance. In this episode recorded during LGBTQ+ History Month in the UK, the discussion charts the changes and progress of Pride, Diva Media Group’s plans for Lesbian Visibility Week and how organisations can get involved.

 

 

Jane Hill

Jane presents the BBC News at One, Six and Ten, and on the BBC News Channel. She’s covered many high profile stories for TV News, including the terrorist attacks at London Bridge and Manchester Arena; the Grenfell Tower fire; the murder of Jo Cox MP; US Presidential elections; British general elections; Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans; the disappearance of Madeleine McCann in Portugal; the 2012 London Olympics and the Glasgow Commonwealth Games.

Passionate about the arts, Jane hosts The Film Review on BBC News with Mark Kermode, and fronts BBC News’ annual coverage of the BAFTA film awards and the Turner Prize. She was a radio producer for 10 years before moving into television, and has presented programmes on Radio 4 and Radio 5 Live, and has stood in for Jeremy Vine on Radio 2. Her 3 part documentary about Parkinson’s disease aired on the BBC World Service last autumn.

Outside the newsroom, Jane has worked for more than 10 years in the field of Equality, Diversity & Inclusion. She lives in London with her wife Sara and their dog Bess. She supports a number of charities in the fields of health and diversity; including Diversity Role Models, the Albert Kennedy Trust, and Parkinson’s UK. Her hobbies include the arts, particularly theatre; walking her dog and going to the gym.

You can follow Jane on Twitter @JaneHillNews.

 

Polly Shute

Polly Shute is a partnership and sponsorship consultant, who focuses on connecting good brands with good causes. Polly is currently working for DIVA Media Group, Europe’s biggest LBTQ title. She spent 4 years on the Board of Pride in London and is currently a committee member for Nexus and Out in Tech.

You can follow Polly on Twitter @shute_polly.

 

Series Seven, Episode Two Transcript

Julia: Hello, my name is Julia Streets and welcome to DiverCity Podcast, talking about equality, inclusion, and diversity in financial services. On the podcast, we seek to shine a light on positive progress, call out areas requiring further focus, and offer lots of ideas to help drive change. Today I’m joined by presenter Jane Hill and partnership and sponsorship consultant, Polly Shute.

Jane Hill will be well known to many as a presenter of the BBC News at One, Six and Ten, and the BBC News Channel. She has covered many high profile news stories from both inside and outside the studio that are ranged from reporting about the terrorist attacks at London Bridge and Manchester Arena, to US Presidential and British general elections, to major sporting events including the 2012 London Olympics and Glasgow Commonwealth Games. Passionate about the arts, Jane hosts the Weekly Film Review on BBC News with Mark Kermode and fronts the coverage of the BAFTA Film awards and the Turner Prize for the BBC. Outside the newsroom, Jane has worked for more than 10 years in the field of equality, diversity, and inclusion. She lives in London with her wife Sarah and their dog Bess and supports many of the charities in the field of health and diversity including Diversity Role Models, the Albert Kennedy Trust, and Parkinson’s UK.

Jane, welcome to the show.

Jane: Thank you, Julia. Lovely to be here.

Julia: Polly Shute is a partnership and sponsorship consultant focused on connecting good brands with good causes. Polly is currently working for DIVA Media Group, Europe’s biggest LBTQ title and she spent four years on the board of Pride in London and is currently a committee member for Nexus, formerly known as the Network Of Networks. They bring together more than 200 LGBTQ networks and she’s also involved with Out in Tech, with more than 30,000 members worldwide. Polly, thanks so much for joining us.

Polly: Thank you. It’s great to be here.

Julia: As always, we invite both our guests to take a minute just to explain what they’re focused on in 2020. Jane, let’s come to you first of all, what are you focused on?

Jane: I’m hoping 2020 is quite an exciting year for me because it’s a whole new approach. I am in remission from breast cancer I’m glad to be able to say. I went back to work last May and so I have entered 2020 on a new working pattern, and without getting bogged down in the minutiae of that, I’m hoping that I will have a little more time for me every week. As someone who I hope has worked pretty hard for most of my career, that’s a slightly strange place to be, a little bit weird but quite exciting and it’s a question of what am I going to do with that little bit of extra spare time that I’ve given myself?

It’s an experiment just for this year and I want, to put it bluntly, do some things for myself, but also get out there and do rather more for the causes I am passionate about, you have already outlined some of those at the start of the programme, lesbian visibility is a very big part of that. I will be doing more work with all the health charities that I support as well, but I’m hoping I’m going to find that I’ve got a little more time in 2020 to throw myself back into my work in the world of D&I. It’s a brave new year and I hope I can achieve much. Let’s see.

Julia: Can I also just take a moment to say how delighted we are to hear you’re in remission. That’s fantastic.

Jane: Thank you. Well, it’s thanks to the NHS, but yes, it’s all going well so far.

Julia: Polly, tell us what you’re focused on this year as well.

Polly: I’m just going to say I’m three years clear of breast cancer as well.

Jane: I didn’t know that.

Polly: Yes, thanks to the NHS as well.

Jane: For many of us who are part of a club that we don’t want to join, it’s amazing the connections it brings actually.

Polly: Exactly! 2020 for me is really following a passion of mine. I was on the board of Pride for four years and one of the things I really noticed from Pride, because I went to loads of networking events, is just that there weren’t enough women out there and there weren’t enough women at events. There is a day in the calendar in April called Lesbian Visibility Day and I am part of Team DIVA now and we’re extending that to a week because we don’t think a day is enough. It also falls on a Sunday this year, which isn’t very helpful to businesses to get involved.

We are launching the first ever Lesbian Visibility Week, w/c the 20th of April. We’ve got a number of different events happening. We’ve got a launch in the House of Commons. We’ve launched and we’ll show the results of the biggest ever survey done into LBTQ women. We will have a conference which is focused on LBTQ women who are managers or aspiring managers. We’ll have the fourth, DIVA Awards. 

We’re really calling out to businesses, and particularly businesses in the city, to put on events. That doesn’t mean they have to have a big panel event, it could just be a lunch, it could be something quite informal to encourage women who probably aren’t out to come out and to feel more comfortable with it.

One of the things that prompted me to do this was when I was at Pride we did a survey in 2018, and one of the things that really stuck with me was that you’re twice as unlikely to come out as a woman, a gay woman, a gay identifying woman, as a gay man. Remember, because that survey was done by Pride in London, that probably applies to a lot of London-based city and city brands. That’s certainly what I see. So for me, Lesbian Visibility Week is all about trying to create a platform that supports women, engages them, and encourages them to be more visible at work.

Julia: And certainly the experience of myself in the city. I always say, I spent 20 years of my career in the city trying not to be asked the question, “What did you do at the weekend?” Not that it’s that exciting, but it was actually just more that I was convinced it was going to destroy my career. Suddenly hearing many other people talk about not wanting to come out in the city, I wonder to what degree that is changing.

Jane, you’ve been working in diversity inclusion for, what, 10 years now and I’d love to hear your thoughts on has the world changed. When we say 10 years, was that when you first came out?

Jane: I came out roughly about 15 years ago. It’s quite hard to date it specifically, isn’t it? I started doing work with corporates, in the kind of world that you and Polly are very familiar with, but I absolutely was not. I personally struggled so hard to come out, and that is quite well documented, I was in my thirties before I came out. I think once you then are out, you feel, or I certainly felt very, very passionately that you had to be reasonably visible, because there is no doubt in my mind that one of the reasons I struggled so much was because I simply didn’t see gay women in public life. That obviously part of me is just on the telly, but it means in all walks of life and it means in parliament, in business, wherever you look, there just were so few gay women and that was definitely a major contributory factor I think to me struggling with who I really was.

I certainly, on top of that, didn’t see any gay women who looked like me, I don’t want to go down that rabbit hole of how we all look and what the perception is about how gay women are meant to look, but I felt very isolated. A combination of my upbringing, but even more so just public life and lack of role models, that affected me greatly. I just thought, “This is ridiculous. What a dreadful waste of my 20s, what a terrible waste of energy.” Exactly to your point, Julia, the way we manage our language and we try to say, “They.” All that nonsense that goes on. What a waste of energy. So that’s what made me passionate about trying to be a little more vocal, trying to be a little bit more out there. I’m not famous, I’m not ridiculously well-known in any way, shape or form. But I do work in TV news, so it gives you a tiny platform and I just thought it was really, really important to use that.

In addition to that, I wanted to get out of the media bubble and I was freelance for many years. In those days I went out and tried to meet up with as many other gay women as possible in a professional context. I went into corporates and did talks and chaired events and chaired panels and chaired events for International Women’s Day and all those panels and conferences that you would both be familiar with and all your listeners will be familiar with. That was fascinating for me because it’s great to get out from the media world, great to meet people in the corporate world and other walks of life too, don’t get me wrong, not just the corporate world, and just see what the mood was out there.

The final point on that is what was so interesting was that in a weird way I felt the corporate world was way ahead of the media world because there were lots of networks in big companies, I remember going to lots of big famous companies, I don’t need to name them, but you would know them all and your listeners would, and they had women’s networks, they had BME networks, and I used to come back thinking, “the BBC has got none of this.” The BBC certainly didn’t have any women’s networks at all, but there was nothing like that. I thought, “Wow, this is great. The city so far ahead of my working life.” And yet, the women I was encountering in the banks and the insurance companies and all the others were even more scared to come out to people in my world. That was astonishing to me. Fascinating, but terrifying.

Julia: Polly, does that chime with the research that you’ve been doing?

Polly: There’s not a lot of research out there actually. The last time the government did a survey, if you remember, they did that huge survey in 2018, they lumped lesbians and gay men together, which was incredibly frustrating because it doesn’t give you the data you want. Surveys that have been done, which are quite small, have highlighted that there definitely are issues. Just what you were talking about, I think there was a survey done recently that said 86% of women say that gay men have more visibility than they do. There was a survey that women are uncomfortable with the word lesbian, and I don’t think it’s just women that are uncomfortable with the word lesbian, I was in a very well known cafe chain the other day and typed in lesbian conference and was barred. I know a lot of companies where the word lesbian, if you put lesbian in the title, it won’t go through because it’s seen as a word that’s associated with porn.

I just think there’s all these stigmas that, on their own, they don’t mean a lot, but if you add them together, they stop women coming out. I think the survey that I alluded to earlier said that one in five women were uncomfortable with the term lesbian. I certainly know a lot of men that when I say the term lesbian are uncomfortable with it. I do think that it becomes a more difficult environment and I would agree with you that big city firms and big financial firms have been leading the way and really leading the way internally and externally in promoting diversity and inclusion. But when you drill down to it, a lot of them are now coming to us.

I was at a launch of Pride in the City, which is an initiative I launched when I was at Pride about trying to get more city firms to talk about diversity and inclusion. I had network leads coming up from a big company saying, “How do I get more women?” I think the good thing is that the men are noticing now, I think four or five years ago they didn’t notice and I think sometimes they still don’t notice, but they’re beginning to say now, “Actually, it doesn’t feel right to have a network where we only have 20% of the people that are there that are women.” And the women are then not joining because they feel intimidated turning up. I do think we’re making great strides forward in diversity and inclusion, but I think the one area that doesn’t get the focus that it should do is LBTQ women.

Jane: I think that Lesbian Visibility Week is so important and it is still such an issue, which is why you’re starting it and working on it and I think it’s vital. It was really interesting what you said about stats because I looked up the BBC stats. For people who don’t know, the BBC has about 19,000 people on full-time staff, I believe, and the stats there suggests that 10 or 11% of the staff identifies as LGBT. But again, there’s no published breakdown of the difference between men and women. I have been led to believe, by people I won’t name within the corporation, that if you look at the breakdown, which they don’t publish, that actually it’s way more gay men than gay women. What’s that about? Why is that?

Certainly within the newsroom, you can count the gay women on one hand in TV news. Now I cannot speak for other parts of the BBC and obviously the BBC is a big beast that does lots of different things. I can’t speak for drama or history programmes or the natural history unit or any of that, but within TV news, the numbers are still tiny in 2020. Why is that? I just don’t get it.

Polly: It is something even when I go to things, I’m a member of Nexus number and I’m a member of Out in Tech and I joined Out in Tech to try and push the women’s agenda, we are putting on an Out in Tech event during Lesbian Visibility Week. It’s really important, we do an event every month for Out in Tech, they’re so popular, these events, but we only want to do four a year for women. We want to use them as an opportunity for women to feel they can come along to a safe space, meet another woman who they get on with, and then come along to the more general events because they’re great events, they’re fantastic, they’re great for networking, they’re held by amazing companies, but I do understand how some women may walk into there and just feel intimidated by an environment that’s 80% male.

For some women that is just enough to stop them going, or they might have gone once on their own and felt so uncomfortable, they won’t go again, there’s a tipping point. I think the way to do it initially is to put on more network events that are focused purely around women so that they can find somebody that they get on with to go to those events. A lot of the research we want to do as part of Lesbian Visibility Week is to try and help companies understand that.

The research that we’ll be doing, we’ll be sharing with our partners and we hope that there’ll be some areas that we go into further that will just help companies say, “Well, if there’s just some small things that I can do, and even if it is during Lesbian Visibility Week, I’m going to put on an event and when I do my awards listing and I go to these fancy awards, I’m going to make sure my table is 50/50 women, men.” That would be amazing. The amount of times I go to LGBTQ awards and the table’s 100% men and I’m like, “Where’s the women on your table?” And they were like, “Oh, well we didn’t think they’d want to come.” And I’m like, “You should be making sure your table is 50/50.”

Jane: It is still happening, isn’t it? I’ve been going to events like that for more than 10 years and it’s got a little bit better at most of them, at some of them it’s got a lot better. But you still sometimes go to an event and you think, “This is about diversity, this is about inclusion, everyone should be welcome.” Allies as well, don’t get me wrong. I mean the allies are hugely important, hugely important, underestimated. But still are exactly as you say, Polly, I’ve had that experience too where it’s very, very male-dominated and some of them are still very, very white as well I would observe.

Julia: It feels like there’s a zeitgeist of change really, because in all the guests we’ve had on the show and then also all the events that I speak at as well, one of the subjects that comes up over and over and over again, which is almost the thing that everybody’s deeply focused in is intersectionality. When we talk about gender, making sure the way is ethnic minority representative as well, and then also reaching out to the LGBTQ communities as well. Also we have guests talking about the LGBTQ community, ensuring that there’s an ethnic minority representation in that as well. I asked the question, and of course everybody gives me the right answer, but I wonder if that’s the reality and are we seeing a shift and are you hopeful about that?

Polly: I think we’re starting to see a shift. I think organisations like UK Black Pride are making a massive impact out there. I think organisations in some ways are very focused on the B.A.M.E issue. So when I’ve spoken at conferences, I think they’d probably be more focused on that than gender because they will tend to get attacked for that more than gender parity. I’ve gone to events where they’ve been very open with me when I’ve said, “Wow, I’m not very comfortable with the amount of women on your panels,” and said, “Actually we get that, but our focus has been making sure that we have the right ethnic mix when people come along.”

I think it is beginning to change, and I think networks are beginning to realise that they need to be better at including people from different parts of the community. Not just from ethnic parts of the community, but people who identify as trans or just gender queer. I think it’s difficult to get it all right. I think my message to networks is, if you want to get different people on board, you have to go and find them. The men will always put themselves forward and then they will find that other men friends to join them. The only way you can really control diversity and inclusion is by going out and finding someone who probably doesn’t think they’re ready to be on the committee and inviting them to do it. I don’t think enough of that happens. It’s so important, because otherwise you just get the same views around the table, you just get the same events happening.

There’s so many Prides, there’s 140 Prides in the country now, and so many of those are run by men. So surprise, surprise, the events are developed for men. When I joined Pride in London, one of the biggest things that I’m proud of is that we have a women’s stage, now that may not seem a lot to men, but for women that’s a really important stage because it’s run in partnership with DIVA and it’s for women developed by women, all the content on there is female. It makes a big difference because there’s only one bar in the whole of London that’s for women and I think it can feel quite a lonely place in London if you don’t think anything’s designed for you.

Jane: Yes. And that’s in the Capital! I mean it’s extraordinary. That blows me away.

Polly: One women’s bar. That’s a bar that’s only open in the evening. There used to be a great cafe. If you’re a woman and you’re coming out and you don’t want to go to a bar because that’s just not your thing and you just want to go to a cafe and you just want to have a cup of coffee and meet other people, there are men’s bars that the doors are open for you, but that’s not your environment. On the other extreme, you’ve got networking clubs that have opened, I’m not going to name this one, but there’s one that’s open recently where it’s £2,800 to join. If you are gay, if you are an LGBTQ woman that’s a new manager or an aspiring manager and you’re thinking, “I want to come out, I want to feel comfortable, I want to build my network,” where do you go?

Jane: Is that a women’s-only one you’re referencing there?

Polly: Yes.

Jane: Right. So it’s for all women, but your point is that if it’s nearly three grand a year, then you’re instantly exclusive.

Polly: Yes. The ones that I worry about, and that’s why we’ve aimed the conference that we’re doing at Lesbian Visibility Week at new and aspiring managers is there’s a lot of research done by McKinsey that says, “When you’re on the career ladder, the level that you fall off at is managerial level.” If you think about it for gay women, there’s a double glass ceiling, so it’s not just coming out, it’s not just being a woman, it’s being a gay woman.

One of the reasons we’ve done the conferences is to inspire them, but also to give them a space to network and meet other women that are similar to them so they can build their network organically. There are loads of networks for very senior women and people like myself and that’s great, but we were already there. What I want is the next generation to come through and be stronger and to run those networks and to be more forceful at work. I spent my 30s feeling angry because I wasn’t who I wanted to be, but did not feel comfortable enough to come out. It hampered my career because when you’re constantly self-censoring and when you’re constantly angry and frustrated, you cannot be a good employee.

Julia: Nor indeed a good leader. I think that’s the thing, and I think about the years where I was essentially putting up barriers around me constantly and just giving yourself and rocking up as an authentic person. Of course we all talk about authentic leadership, that is one of the biggest buzzwords ever. But actually if you’re having to put these barriers around you, it’s not only exhausting, but it’s also very destructive actually.

Polly: What I’m hoping happens during Lesbian Visibility Week is the women that are visible, the women that are out there and are senior will be more visible so that everybody else can see them. What I say to my friends who don’t come out very often because they’re in relationships and they’re happy is, “There’s one week that you’re going to be out and wear your rainbow badge, do it that week, because there may be someone in the office who just doesn’t know and looks at you and goes, ‘Wow’.” 

The second thing is to provide platforms in work where women can go if they’re not feeling comfortable and meet other women, because we all know how important that is, I know my network is really important to me.

Julia: Fantastic. Well I think that’s a great moment to turn to Cynthia for some research to support the discussion.

Cynthia: Polly mentioned the 2019 Invisible Women report by media agency UM. Here was some of the findings: 83% agree that society tries to sweep queer women under the rug. Queer women perceive that they are hidden. 86% agree that queer men have more visibility in public life than queer women. 82% claimed that they would have come out sooner if brands had shown more people like them when they were growing up.

On the subject of misogyny, 91% agree that there is misogyny in society towards queer women and 79% agree that there is misogyny within the LGBTQ community itself.

Julia: Thanks, Cynthia. The links to the research can be found on our website, divercitypodcast.com. That’s where you can find all our episodes and sign up for early notifications of future recordings. Please do follow us on Twitter @divercitypod, and DiverCity Podcast is available on BrightTALK and all good podcast channels. We’d love a rating because it all helps to promote the show.

I was really interested in what you were saying about language and people’s affinity with language and I wonder to what degree, Polly, that’s changing over time. We hear of young generations coming through going, “I identify as pansexual.” What are your thoughts on that?

Polly: I remember when I was at Pride in London and this whole identity thing became massive, how people wanted to identify themselves. I think one of the things that I really noticed was the importance of the word Q. For a long time people said LGBT and Q got added on. For a lot of us that were slightly older, particularly gay men, I think queer has really negative connotations of queer bashing. What we found is for a lot of younger people, they didn’t want to be put in those boxes, so whether that was being defined as a lesbian, gay man, bisexual, they wanted to be a lot more fluid about it. Identity, I think is changing massively and people will change their identity, they will say, “It’s not just about I’m going to say ‘I’m queer.'” They may say they’re queer one day and then bi one day and then five days later they may identify as being straight again. I just think you have to be more fluid, and that’s really difficult when it comes to networks as well.

If you go and speak to people who go to UK Black Pride, for example, that is such an important event to them. But the same people who go to UK Black Pride, the reason it’s on a Sunday, it used to be on the Saturday with Pride, is that the people that went to UK Black Pride wanted to go to Pride with their other friends, but that’s Sunday. Having an exclusive event that was developed for them was so important. I think it’s really hard because you have to do both, you have to have big amorphous events like Pride that try and cope with everybody and cater for everybody and that is so hard. But then you’ve got to accept that Bi Pride, UK Black Pride, even queer events. Last year we saw the first Trans in the City event. People’s identities can be really important to them, but at the same time you’ve got to create an environment where big mass events, and I take networks in that as well as big events, need to cover intersectionality. I think that’s challenging.

Julia: It is a challenge because I think of the career lifespan. If you are a caregiver, and that could be ageing parents or that could be children, there are times of day when networks are not ideal, for example, end of the day in the evenings as well. Trying to navigate corporate structures as well. I mean, Jane, you work with lots of young bright things in the radio world…

Jane: Oh the young people, young enough to be my children! That’s the point I’ve reached in my career. It’s terrifying. It usually comes up when someone famous dies and you realise you are the only person on the desk who can write the introduction to the obituary because all the 25-year-olds go, “Oh, what were they famous for?” You think, “No, they were really famous.” I mean they’re brilliant. I work with some really fantastic people, men and women in their 20s. I can’t quite believe I’ve reached that point in my career where they are so young.

I think what’s lovely is it touches slightly on something that Polly said earlier, actually for the youngsters, they’ll hate me for saying that, for youngsters I work with who are anything from 22 to 32 coming up through the newsroom, I do see a positivity and a sense of self that I could have only dreamed of really. I think that’s lovely and that is a positive that I have to take. They seem much more secure in who they are, in their place in the world. I think the lack of security they have is actually financial and we know all about that and the problems with housing, particularly in London, the Southeast, and the cost of it. But if we set the financial problem aside, and I don’t mean to say that glibly because from a financial perspective, who wants to be a 20-year-old today earning very little money? It’s terrifying. But in terms of them as individuals and who they are and how centred they feel, I think they are much more together than I ever was or lots of people of my generation were.

I’m 50 now and there’s just a much stronger sense of identity among all of them. Now, I have to say from my perspective, I am for the very large part talking about straight people. I still sadly work with very few gay people in the newsroom, certainly very few gay women, a few gay men. But that’s fine, I love them all nonetheless. All comers are welcome. I’m certainly not really speaking to the gay experience there of 20-somethings, but to 20-somethings generally, I work with some fantastic people who have a great sense of who they are and don’t need labels and just are who they are.

In fact one of the few gay men I work with I can think of, he’s very recently taken a few weeks off because he’s going off to marry his boyfriend and we had a little gathering for him and we had a whip-round and bought him a present. I just could have cried when he opened his card and his present from everyone because I thought, “This is so not what I would have gone through 25/30 years ago when I started working there.” Not because people were horrible, but there just wasn’t that confidence. But now here was this young gay guy marrying his boyfriend and it was treated just the same as anyone else going off to get married from the newsroom. That was lovely. It really did bring tears to my eyes. I thought that that was a positive. I thought, “Oh brilliant, we’re getting there.” It’s a very, very slow journey. But that was a really lovely moment for me. Really lovely to see that.

Julia: I think that’s a really beautiful example that just encapsulates how the world has changed as well. Polly, your experience from Pride, you must have seen that change massively?

Polly: Yes definitely. I was just thinking actually, in 2022 it’s going to be 50 years, believe it or not, since the first Pride. When you look the first Pride in 1972 that went through the streets of London, it was 2000 people and it was very much gay men. They talked about a Gay Pride, it wasn’t until a while later they started bringing lesbians into it, so it was very much around the G. If you fast forward to last year, there were 50,000 people who wanted to march, 30,000 who could, because there’s limits in the street of London, and there was everything right through the LGBTQI spectrum. It’s massively changed in terms of inclusivity of language and as well as ethnicity and everything else. From 2000 gay men marching to 30,000 people across the spectrum representing lots of different countries, lots of different gender as well as sexual identities, I think that’s a really good example of how far we’ve come and how language and identity has changed in 50 years.

Julia: I think that’s a perfect place to finish the show. It’s incredible on this podcast how time just disappears, it has been a fascinating conversation. Polly and Jane, thank you so much for joining us in the studio today. My name’s Julia Streets, thank you for listening to DiverCity Podcast.

Jane: Thank you.

Polly: Been a pleasure.

Kieron: This episode of the DiverCity Podcast was produced by me, Kieron Yates, on behalf of Julia Streets Productions. Thanks to Cynthia Akinsanya for her insights. You can find out more about the guests on this week’s show on our website, divercitypodcast.com. Whilst you are there, you can also sign up to our newsletter for all our latest updates.

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