Does the queer scene in Leeds do enough for people of colour?

Yvonne describes the 'burnout' some activists have experienced trying to make queer spaces more welcoming for people of colour.

Duration 03:59


INTERVIEWER: Do you think that the queer scene in Leeds does enough for people of colour in general?

YVONNE: I think it's something that people – that a lot of people have done a lot of campaigning and activism over. Kind of over the past five or ten years. But I think it's got to – I think from, from what I, what I gather – it's got to the point where, where nothing seems to be changing. So [unclear] 'cause I went to this [sighs] can't remember what it was. Some kind of mapping meeting? Um, I think it was – I think it was sort of – specifically sort of talking to... LGBTQ people of colour in Leeds. And, and just talking about... like our experiences. And um, I think the, sort of the, the sort of, the feeling from that was that people had done all the campaigning, done all the activism, um, sort of um, know with the bars at Lower Briggate. And just nothing was changing so people were just, were just wanting, people were like getting burnt out with it and just decided that they just wanted just to... set up, set up their own spaces, um, instead. I know that the, the Bayard Project's um sort of, kind of restarted again. Um, but I've, I've not been able to get, get to any of their um meetings [laughs].

INTERVIEWER: Can you tell me a little bit about the Bayard Project?

YVONNE: Um, it's sort of specifically, I think it's just for, for LGBTQ people of colour to meet. I think it's at, I think it's here at MESMAC actually. I think it's the 4th Saturday of the month, I think.

INTERVIEWER: You mentioned a little bit earlier about trying to get some of the more mainstream places to sort of change their ways a little bit. Are they sort of stuck in the past? Are they not sort of up-to-date?

YVONNE: I feel it's, I think it's the, the kind of, their kind of main sort of customer, their sort of customer base is, um, sort of white, cis, gay, non-disabled men. And... and it's kind of, I think, any sort of... any sort of change in terms of... in terms of the, the venues being more diverse, would really need to come from them. And because, because people thought that it hasn't... it's kind of... people just being a bit, sort of... you know, people of colour, sort of, bi people, trans people have just, just, just – have not wanted to have, not really wanted to go at all and… and just go to Wharf Chambers and now Flamingos. 'Cause they just... I think people just sort of... I think people have kind of done as much activism as they feel they can do but... maybe they just feel like they've been discouraged by, by not really seeing, seeing things change.