The rallying of support for the global LGBT community post the Orlando massacre has been incredibly moving. With singing in the streets of London's Soho, vigils across the U.S., and a rainbow-coloured Eiffel Tower, the outpouring of grief and solidarity has been visible, profound and far-spread. Omar Mateen’s unprecedented massacre of 49 people and the wounding of another 52 has made one thing is clear: The LGBT community still faces violence, persecution and marginalisation. Reassuringly, people in positions of power and influence have come out and shown their support in ways that can only provide hope for future generations. And one of the most high-profile is our own Prince William. Attitude magazine, the country's biggest gay title, today confirmed that the second-in-line to the throne will appear on the cover of their July issue, due out on 22nd June. The image of William in a white shirt is accompanied by the line: "Nobody should be bullied for their sexuality or any other reason."
The news broke on Tuesday when William and Kate visited the American Embassy to sign the condolence book for the Orlando victims, writing, “With our deepest condolences and with our thoughts and prayers to all those affected.” William then confided in Craig Petty, president of LGBT association GLIFAA, about his upcoming appearance, according to The Telegraph.
"I told him what I do and he said he's going to be in Attitude magazine," Petty said. "I was really nervous about meeting the royal couple, but they are both great at putting you at ease. I think it's great that they have come here today to show their support." After the new broke, Attitude released a statement: "On 12 May 2016, His Royal Highness The Duke of Cambridge invited Attitude magazine to bring members of the LGBT+ community to Kensington Palace to hear their experiences of homophobic, bi-phobic and transphobic bullying, and discuss the mental health implications it has." The Duke then posed for the photographer Leigh Keily.
William has tirelessly campaigned for the protection of LGBT communities from bullying through his Diana Award’s Anti-Bullying Ambassadors programme, which is part of a continued dedication to the legacy of his late mother's charitable works. It is the first time that a royal will ever cover a gay publication, and shows a progressive and more hopeful approach to how members of the Royal Family might better support marginalised groups.
A spokesman for the LGBT Foundation told The Telegraph why this news is a beacon of hope: "There has not been that many times when the LGBT community has been mentioned or highlighted by the royal family," he said. "The fact that he has agreed to be in Attitude and is signing books of condolences for the Orlando massacre, shows the importance of reaching out to the LGBT community."