Peter Tatchell

Peter Tatchell

Peter Tatchell is made Doctor of Letters.

Peter Tatchell has been campaigning for human rights for over 40 years, on issues of democracy, civil liberties, social equality, environmental protection, peace and global justice.

He began his human rights campaigning in 1967, against the death penalty and for Aboriginal rights in his homeland of Australia.

From 1971, he was a leading activist in the Gay Liberation Front in London. Two years later, he staged the first ever gay rights protest in a communist country, in East Berlin.

He co-founded the queer rights group OutRage! in 1990. OutRage! outed 10 Anglican bishops in 1994, accusing them of hypocrisy for publicly endorsing the Church's homophobic stance. Four years later, he interrupted the Easter Sermon of the Archbishop of Canterbury in protest at Dr Carey's support for laws that discriminate against gay people.

In 1999, in London, he ambushed the motorcade of the Zimbabwean President, Robert Mugabe; attempting a citizen's arrest on charges of torture. A repeat attempt in Brussels in 2001 resulted in him being beaten unconscious by Mugabe's bodyguards.

He was voted the sixth greatest 'Hero of our Time' by readers of the New Statesman in 2006, and in the same year The Independent listed him as one of top 50 'good' people in Britain. In 2009, he won Campaigner of the Year at the Observer Ethical Awards. He is the Green Party's human rights spokesperson.

Last updated: Wednesday, 21 July 2010