Dean Joe Hawes to become new chair of Ozanne Foundation
Dean of St Edmundsbury & Ipswich, Very Revd Joe Hawes, is to take over as the Chair of the Ozanne Foundation. The Ozanne Foundation work with religious organisations around the world to eliminate discrimination based on sexuality or gender in order to celebrate the equality and diversity of all. Dean Joe follows the Rt Revd Paul Bayes, who will be retiring as Bishop of Liverpool.
The Very Revd Joe Hawes is the most senior out LGBTQ+ cleric on General Synod, the national assembly of the Church of England. He was voted the new Chair of the Foundation at a meeting of the Trustees on January 19th, 2022, ahead of the forthcoming retirement of Bishop Paul Bayes.
Dean Joe says, ‘I am grateful and excited to take on this new role and humbled by the opportunity. I passionately share the Foundation’s vision of working with partners in this country and around the world to bring greater inclusion and acceptance for our LGBTQ+ sisters and brothers, many of whom live daily in real danger of physical and mental harm, and to bring an end once and for all to the harmful and discredited practice of so-called “conversion therapy”. As one who experienced as a teenager the bullying typical of former days, I am dedicated to working with the Ozanne Foundation to continue to make a positive difference in the lives of those who suffer such discrimination today.’
The Ozanne Foundation was founded by Jayne Ozanne, a gay evangelical who works to ensure full inclusion of all LGBTQ+ people of faith, particularly in the Church. She has been heavily involved in campaigning for equal rights for the LGBTQ+ community, notably tabling a Private Members Motion in July 2017 that led to the General Synod condemning Conversion Therapy and calling on the government to ban it. In 2019 she was invited to be a founding member of the government’s LGBT Advisory Panel.
More information on the Ozanne Foundation can be found here: https://www.ozanne.foundation/