On Wednesday 11 October the kick-off of the National Coming Out Day in the Haaglanden region will take place in a special way: a breakfast in the five town halls of the participating Rainbow municipalities of Delft, The Hague, Leidschendam-Voorburg, Westland and Zoetermeer. The breakfast tables are a reflection of the residents and officials of the municipalities concerned: from community center employee to football coach to alderman. In the afternoon, the official joint Kick-off of the 5-day awareness campaign (11 to 15 October) around Coming Out Day will take place at the International Gay Monument at the Koekamp in The Hague.

(Click here for the full program of the Coming Out week.)

October 11 is Coming Out Day. On this day, which is internationally propagated, attention is paid to the moment when a gay, lesbian, bisexual transgender or people with an intersex condition (LGBTI persons) express his or her sexual and/or gender preference. Unfortunately, a so-called coming out (coming out of the closet) is still not a matter of course for everyone. For the second time in a row, the five municipalities, in collaboration with COC Haaglanden and DWH (Delft Homosexuality Working Group), are organizing a Coming Out Day campaign from 11 to 15 October – an awareness campaign.

Mission
Together, the municipalities want to show that they support an inclusive society. During the Coming Out Day campaign, they and their social partners pay explicit attention to the importance that everyone in their municipalities should be able to be themselves, regardless of sexual orientation and gender expression. They do this by discussing and propagating the social acceptance of LGBTi in the Haaglanden region. They focus on all citizens.

Kick Off
A public joint kick-off will take place on Wednesday 11 October. The five aldermen of the municipalities involved, those with LGBTI emancipation in their portfolio, meet at the International Gay Monument in The Hague to officially start the activities. During the kick-off program there will also be a panel discussion with the five aldermen about the spearheads of the LGBTI policy within each municipality.

Campaign content
The five municipalities themselves organize various actions and activities on these days, in addition to breakfast. With playful items in the shopping streets, sports activities and various substantive events, attention is generated and requested for the LGBTI community in order to increase support and acceptance. For example, the well-known rainbow flags will be hoisted at many iconic locations in the various cities, such as at the Hofvijver in The Hague and the old town hall of Delft.
At the end of September, the program will be available online on the website of the participating municipalities, COC Haaglanden and DWH.

Background
In 2008, 18 so-called 'Koploper' municipalities, including The Hague, joined the then Local LGBTI policy program of the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science. Meanwhile, there are 44 so-called Rainbow municipalities that are working on inclusive policy for LGBTi's. They have a covenant signed in which they declare that they want to help improve the social acceptance, safety and emancipation of lesbian women, gay men, bisexuals, transgenders and people with an intersex condition (LGBTI). The National Coming Out Day, on which attention is drawn to the LGBTI community, fits in well with this.

Practical
From the end of September, the entire program from 11 to 15 October can be found online at www.cochaaglanden.nl, www.dwhdelft.nl and the five participating municipalities.
Where: various locations in the five participating municipalities (Delft, The Hague, Leidschendam-Voorburg, Westland and Zoetermeer)
When:
– Wednesday 11 October to Sunday 15 October 2017
– The official kick-off will take place on Wednesday 11 October at the International Gay Monument in The Hague (at the Koekamp). The program starts at 14.00 p.m.

The Coming Out Day campaign is an initiative of the five rainbow municipalities of Delft, The Hague, Leidschendam-Voorburg, Westland and Zoetermeer in collaboration with COC-Haaglanden and DWH (Delft Workgroup Homosexuality).

Link background information start Rainbow municipalities
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