Who will you be? Diversity and marriage equality in Switzerland

Where do you get your inspiration in these times of the pandemic, when we can’t go to the theatre nor can we go travelling? I miss meeting people outside my “bubble” and getting diverse views of the world.

So I was so pleased to find out that the UWPIAA started a series of critical conversations about different topics. Just the other day I followed the conversation about “gender”. Even though I thought I was aware of a lot, it was touching and very inspiring. By listening to the conversation I learned a lot. What touched me the most, was how the panelists had a loving but critical view on how UWP deals with the topic of diversity. Jenn Burleton (she/her, SingOut ’69), a transgender woman, said that she had waited 52 years for UWP to have this conversation and that she hadn’t been comfortable being her full self in UWP till about 2007. Devan Wiensch (they/them, 17B/18B), identifies as non-binary and had (luckily) a different experience but they also think more should be done in UWP. “It’s ok that we ask questions (What color is god’s skin? Who will you be?) and take a stand for what we believe in – also politically.”

I don’t want to say that UWP should become a political organization but I believe that we need to live diversity and inclusivity on all levels. In a world of cis-gender-privilege, white-privilege and all privilege for what some people dare to call the “norm” I would like UWP to make an example in the community. The UWPIAA program committee does that with their critical conversations. I invite you to watch them live on Zoom or later on the UWPIAA Facebook Group.

Those of us who have the right to vote in Switzerland have the opportunity to soon vote for a step into a more inclusive law. In September or November you can vote about marriage equality. Should I ask you here “Who will you be?” or can I just say “to be consistent with the values UWP stands for – please vote yes for marriage equality”.

If you have ideas if or how we can make the communication and the activities of the UWPSAA more inclusive, please contact me anytime. Take care and stay connected.

Laura Curau (she/her), Cast A 2010, Vice-President UWPSAA

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