The Faculty of Arts and Design at the Durban University of Technology will be hosting a webinar on South Africa’s Homophobic Hate Crime Crisis today, Friday, 25 June 2021 via Microsoft Teams from 12pm to 1:30pm. The main purpose of the online event is to address the recent homophobic killings
The webinar will be facilitated by Andile Dube, the Faculty of Arts and Design’s Information and Communications Officer. The guest speakers will include Hlengiwe Buthelezi, Board Member of the Federation of Gay Games and Executive Director of KZN LGBT Recreation, Sharon Cox, Health and Support Services Manager at Triangle Project, Siya Khumalo, Author of a book titled: You Have To Be Gay To Know God and Mr Gay South Africa runner-up and Roche Kester from Out LGBT Well-Being.
The Acting Executive Dean in the Faculty of Arts and Design, Professor Brian Pearce said that the webinar is part of the Executive Dean’s Dialogue Series, a forum for discussion about matters relating to the creative arts, as well as language, communication and education. He confirmed that they also look at topical issues such as gender-based violence, inequality and human rights.
“On 4 June 2021, we had a Dialogue Series on Sculpture in a Digital Age and we plan to have four Dialogue Series during the course of the year. The present topic on South Africa’s Hate Crime Crisis is one which is of concern to all South Africans since crime and violence needs to be addressed in our society. There has been a recent spate of homophobic crimes which was the impulse for this Dialogue Series,” said Prof Pearce.
Sharon Cox’s Biograph
Sharon Cox is the Health and Support Services Manager at Triangle Project, the oldest LGBTI organisation in Africa. She has worked in the human rights sector for the past 25 years and is passionate about working in social justice. As part of her work, she provides training to the criminal justice cluster and other State Departments, NPO’s and schools. Cox prepares victims of hate crimes for court and monitors hate crimes. She was an applicant in the case for marriage equality in South Africa, which was realised in 2006 and has contributed to chapters in two books. She studied theology through the Pacific School of Religion in Berkley California and an important part of her work is introducing people to an affirming, feminist theology, as organised religion is often at the centre of prejudice. Also, she is a Director on the Board of the Global Interfaith Network and sits on the Provincial and National Hate Crimes Task Team and on the Rapid Response Team for Hate Crimes. She holds a degree with majors in Psychology and Criminology and a post graduate degree in Criminology.
Pictured: Professor Brian Pearce, Acting Executive Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Design.