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WorkPride - Community-in-focus panels for ethnicity: Being LGBTQ+ in the MENA region (Middle East and North Africa)

This panel will focus on the challenges of being LGBTQ+ in the MENA (the Middle East and North Africa) region and the lived experiences of our panellists. We will be discussing the main challenges faced by LGBTQ+ people in the region. How does religion intersect with gender identity and sexuality? How has the Covid-19 pandemic affected LGBTQ+ people in the region?

Join us to discuss this and much more, and to bring a better understanding of the lives and issues of the LGBTQ+ population in the region.

In Partnership With


  • Laila El-Metoui
    Laila El-Metoui
    Equity Educator -Stonewall Lesbian Role Model of the Year (2
    Equality Educator | Stonewall Lesbian Role Model 2020 | Helping leaders foster inclusive & diverse workplaces through training and consultancy | Founder of Pride in Education and Educating OUT Racism, UK Queer Arabs and Proud London Councils
  • Rusi Jaspal
    Rusi Jaspal
    Pro Vice-Chancellor (Research & Knowledge Exchange)
    University of Brighton
    Rusi Jaspal is Pro Vice-Chancellor (Research & Knowledge Exchange) and a Professor of Psychology at the University of Brighton in the United Kingdom. He is a Chartered Psychologist and a Fellow of the British Psychological Society, a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, and a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. Professor Jaspal's research cuts across the fields of psychology and public health, focussing particularly on social psychological approaches to promoting good psychological and physical health outcomes. He has developed the Health Adversity Risk Model (HARM) to predict the impact of social and psychological stressors and identity threat on health outcomes. Much of his research using the model has focused on HIV prevention, HIV care and mental health. With Professor Dame Glynis Breakwell, Rusi Jaspal has contributed to the development of Identity Process Theory. Additionally, Professor Jaspal has conducted extensive research into aspects of psychological wellbeing among gay men, the management of identities in conflict, national identity, prejudice and discrimination, public understanding of science, technology and medicine and the psychological impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Rusi Jaspal is the author or editor of 6 books, and has written over 150 peer-reviewed journal articles and book chapters, and several reports for the Department of Health. He supervises and examines PhD students in his areas of expertise. Rusi Jaspal studied at the University of Cambridge, the University of Surrey, and Royal Holloway, University of London. After his PhD, he completed an ESRC post-doctoral research fellowship at the University of Nottingham. In 2015, Rusi Jaspal was awarded a personal chair in Psychology and Sexual Health at De Montfort University Leicester where he also held a number of senior posts, including that of Pro Vice-Chancellor (Research). He has also held professorships at Åbo Akademi University, Turku, Finland, where he helped set up the Minority Research Profile, at at Nottingham Trent University, UK, where he founded and led the Identity Change Research Group. Professor Jaspal has also served as Social Isolation Advisor to Wandsworth Borough Council, London. As a passionate advocate for knowledge exchange, Prof Jaspal has served on many national and international committees relating to his research, including the Steering Committee of HIV Prevention England, the Advisory Group of the National HIV Commission, the Medical Board of NAZ Project London, the Board of Trustees of the LGBT Foundation, and the Working Group for the British Association of Sexual Health and HIV Recommendations for Integrated Sexual Health Services for Trans, Including Non-Binary Patients. In 2018, he delivered a keynote lecture on the social psychology of HIV prevention and care to the British HIV Association/ British Association for Sexual Health and HIV Joint Annual Conference. For many years, he has been and remains a member of the Advisory Board of the Terrence Higgins Trust and an Ambassador for the Honour Abuse Research Matrix (HARM). Rusi Jaspal has won several awards for his research, including: British Psychological Society, Qualitative Methods in Psychology Section’s Outstanding Research by an Early Career Scholar Award. nOSCARS 2019 for his research into HIV prevention in the British South Asian community. Ten Out of Ten Award for research into HIV prevention in BAME communities.
  • Lama Sami
    Lama Sami
    Operations Conduit
    The Marginalized Majority
    Lama is a queer Palestinian Egyptian writer, researcher and activist who goes by they/them pronouns and is based in Toronto. They graduated from the University of Toronto, where they pursued a degree in English, Philosophy and Bioethics and currently are one of Marginalized Majority's Operations Conduits. Marginalized Majority is an organization that facilitates intersectional educational digital safe spaces for the queer newcommer community, queer Global South community and the QTBIPOC community at large. Lama holds dropins and workshops centering trans and non-binary people of color and the QTBIPOC community with the Marginzalized Majority. When they're not doing activism and working they are writing poetry, admiring sunsets and learning how to skate. They are committed to social justice and liberation, and hold space on their social media for education, art and activism centered around Palestinian and QTBIPOC voices. They believe that art and language are integral to every activism movement - it is how we claim our narrative and our agency over our stories. They are dedicated to sharing their queer Palestinian story and art wherever they go, as well as, creating and sustaining spaces where they can amplify and support other QTBIPOC folks' art and work.
  • Jad Jaber
    Jad Jaber
    Founder of Marginalized Majority
    Marginalized Majority
  • Daniel Nasr
    Daniel Nasr
    Diversity & Inclusion Lead
    Amnesty International UK
    Daniel Nasr is Head of Diversity and Inclusion at Amnesty International UK as well as an inclusion and culture consultant, specialising in targeted and culturally competent approaches to DEI practice. For the last decade, he has developed this people-centric approach in the international development, charity, and higher education sectors. Daniel’s outlook on equity and inclusion practice is built on his expertise in governance and strategy, learning and development, and stakeholder engagement. Utilising his service design background, and drawing on his intersecting lived experiences, Daniel offers unique perspectives to leadership development, cultural improvement, and wider capacity building, adhering to his core values of mutual respect, innovation, and co-production.
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