Leading bi+ organisations around Australia will come together to launch this year’s Stand Bi Us Forum. The forum runs from 23 – 26 September and builds on the success of the inaugural event last year. Stand Bi Us celebrates Bi+ Visibility Day, which falls on 23 September each year.
Visibility is important for raising awareness of the unique challenges bi+ people face and for dispelling harmful myths and stereotypes,” said a spokesperson. “We might be the often-erased “silent B” in the LGBTIQA+ acronym, but we are everywhere.”
The forum also provides a valuable opportunity for the bi+ community to build connections, share stories, and learn from one another. The forum is free, almost entirely online, and open to bi+ people, wider LGBTIQA+ communities, and allies. Employees of LGBTIQA+ organisations or organisations working with bi+ people are encouraged to attend.
Sessions cover a range of topics, including a First Nations keynote, bi+ HIV prevention and healthcare, non-binary experiences, bi+ polyamory, bi erasure and self-care, bi+ writers, being older and bi+, intergenerational differences, bi+ inclusion, discussion groups on topics such as pets and games, bi+ nightlife, and a host of musical, storytelling, and poetry performances.
There will also be online morning yoga sessions, a dinner, and a cocktail soirée. The final day includes an in-person picnic in Perth. These sessions speak to the diversity within the bi+ community, which is growing in social recognition. However, the bi+ community remains relatively invisible compared to the gay and lesbian communities.
“We have more sponsors this year, demonstrating a greater awareness and real support for the bi+ community,” said a spokesperson. “This change has come about through years of incredible work by bi+ activists around the country, many of whom have helped organised this event.”
The forum has been organised by Bi+ Collective Australia, made up of BiCONIC, Bisexual Alliance Victoria (BAV), Bi+ Community Perth, Bi+SA, Bi Tasmania, Bi & Prejudice, Brisbane Bi+ Network, Melbourne Bisexual Network, and Sydney Bi+ Network. For more information, visit: www.standbius.com for details.
Image: First Nations Keynote Speakers – Dr Mandy Henningham (University of Sydney) and Dr Todd Fernando (Acting Victorian Commissioner for LGBTIQ+ Communities)