Griff as we knew him best of all | CHE | 14333
Griffith Vaughan Williams, a passionate advocate for many years for the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered people, was born on 9 November 1940 and died on 15 November 2010.
Griff’s involvement in gay rights work began in 1964, before the 1967 Sexual Offences Act partially decriminalised sexual acts between men, and was a leading member of the Campaign for Homosexual Equality from its earliest days. In 1974 Griff was one of the CHE members who agreed to consult on and participate in London Weekend Television’s pioneering documentary about homosexual equality called Speak for Yourself.
In 1980, Griff contributed to the research that led to CHE’s publication of Attacks on Gay People by Julian Meldrum. This helped to expose an alarmingly high number of cases of homophobic violence and abuse in Britain, some of them perpetrated by police themselves. Griff was one a of a small group of activists who approached the Metropolitan Police in the early 1990s with the purpose of working in partnership with them on policing operations and methods which impacted primarily on gay men. The London Lesbian and Gay Police Initiative met regularly with the Met throughout the 1990s.
In June 1999 Griff was one of a group of LGBT reps called into New Scotland Yard for emergency meetings in the aftermath of the Admiral Duncan pub bombing. They advised the Met on the impact of the bombing on the LGBT community in London while the perpetrator, David Copeland, was still at large. The Met decided it needed to extend its links with the LGBT communities and set up the LGBT Advisory Group.
Griff was one of the original members of the LGBT Advisory Group and continued to be an active member until two weeks before his death.