Bishop David Gillett joins Accord

April 26, 2019

Bishop Gillett: “the future health of our society in the whole of the UK depends on an education system in which our schools fully reflect the diversity of the communities in which they are placed”.

David Gillett, the former Bishop of Bolton, has become the Accord Coalition’s latest Distinguished Supporter. Explaining his decision to join Bishop David told Accord ‘For several years I worked in a reconciliation centre in Northern Ireland and saw there the enormous problems of segregated sectarian education. It fired in me the passion for full and free participation in education for all children and young people without testing or distinction.’

‘I believe that the future health of our society in the whole of the UK depends on an education system in which our schools fully reflect the diversity of the communities in which they are placed. Our government and society as a whole has a duty to our children and young people to provide schools that are open and welcoming to all without distinction of religion, ethnicity, class, social standing, or sexual orientation.’

Chair of the Accord Coalition, the Revd Stephen Terry, said ‘Bishop Gillett is absolutely right to highlight the importance of diversity and openness within schools for laying the foundations for an inclusive society. It is a future people of all different religions and beliefs want, and something our school system can help guarantee, but if it is to achieved we must work together to ensure these lessons are not ignored. I am delighted Bishop Gillett has decided to support Accord’s campaign and so strengthen its collective voice.’

The Bishop joins Accord’s list of Distinguished Supporters, who come from varying professional and other backgrounds, but are united in wishing state funded schools to be inclusive and non-discriminatory. The list includes:

  • Professor Jim Al-Khalili OBE, theoretical physicist, author and Science broadcaster
  • Lord Baker of Dorking, former Education Secretary (1986-1989)
  • Professor Ted Cantle CBE, national expert on community cohesion and inter-cultural relations
  • Professor Becky Francis, Director of the Institute of Education
  • Professor A.C. Grayling, philosopher and author
  • Fiona Millar, education campaigner
  • Philip Pullman, author
  • Sir Richard Roberts, Nobel Laureate
  • Polly Toynbee, journalist and writer


One Response to Bishop David Gillett joins Accord

  1. Mark Strange on May 10, 2019 at 11:42 am

    Epidemiology of STIs in England
    Men who have sex with men
    In England in 2014, among male GUM and integrated GUM/SRH clinic attendees, 86% (3,477/ 4,054) of syphilis diagnoses, 68% (18,029/ 26,575) of gonorrhoea diagnoses, 21% (11,468/ 55,807) of chlamydia diagnoses, 12% (1,474/ 11,889) of genital herpes diagnoses and 9% (3,456/ 39,349) of genital warts diagnoses were among MSM (figure 2a).
    The number of diagnoses of STIs reported in MSM has risen sharply in recent years and accounts for the majority of increased diagnoses seen among men. Syphilis diagnoses increased by 46% in the past year (2,375 to 3,477), gonorrhoea diagnoses by 32% (13,629 to 18,029), chlamydia diagnoses (from GUM and integrated GUM/SRH clinics) by 26% (9,118 to 11,468), genital herpes diagnoses by 10% (1,339 to 1,474) and genital warts diagnoses by 10% (3,156 to 3,456) (figure 2b). Gonorrhoea was the most commonly diagnosed STI among MSM in 2014, and 27% (4,891) presented with rectal infections. High levels of gonorrhoea transmission are of particular concern, as data from the Gonoccocal Resistance to Antimicrobials Surveillance Programme (GRASP) show the emergence of gonococcal isolates with resistance or decreased susceptibility to antimicrobials used for treatment [5].
    Several factors are likely to have contributed to the sharp rise in diagnoses among MSM. It is likely that condomless sex associated with HIV seroadaptive behaviours, as has been reported in ongoing epidemics and outbreaks of LGV, Shigella spp. and syphilis, is leading to more STI transmission in this population [6,7]. There has been a steady increase in diagnoses of STIs in HIV-positive MSM since 2009, with a population rate of acute bacterial STIs up to four times that of MSM who were HIVnegative or of unknown HIV status. This suggests that rapid STI transmission is occurring in dense sexual networks of HIV-positive MSM [8]. More screening of extra-genital (rectal and pharyngeal) sites in MSM using NAATs [9], in response to current gonorrhoea testing guidance [10] and the Lymphogranuloma venereum (LGV) epidemic [6,11], will also have improved detection of gonococcal and chlamydial infections in recent years.
    Men who have sex with men continue to experience high rates of STIs and remain a priority for targeted HIV and STI prevention and health promotion work. In June 2014, PHE published an action plan to promote the health and wellbeing of gay, bisexual and other MSM with the vision of all MSM enjoying long healthy lives, and creating and sustaining respectful and fulfilling social and sexual relationships [12]. An advisory group has also been convened to develop interventions to address the public health disparities faced by black and minority ethnic gay, bisexual and other MSM [13].

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