Northampton man nominated for national diversity award after helping others with transitioning

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Shay Robertson was nominated by someone who he does not know after he gave an ‘inspiring’ talk

A Northampton man has been nominated for a national diversity award to honour his commitment to helping other people going through the transition process.

Shay Robertson has made it his mission to provide the information he could not find when he was transitioning from a woman to man between 2011 and 2017.

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To recognise his dedication to the LGBTQ+ community, someone who Shay gave a talk to nominated him for the ‘positive role model’ award at the National Diversity Awards 2020.

A Northampton man who wrote his own book to help others who are transitioning has been nominated for a national diversity award.A Northampton man who wrote his own book to help others who are transitioning has been nominated for a national diversity award.
A Northampton man who wrote his own book to help others who are transitioning has been nominated for a national diversity award. | ugc

The 49-year-old said: “I went to do a talk at Leicestershire Police about my transition and the following morning I got a call to say someone in my talk had nominated me for the award.

“I have no idea who the person is.

“I was doing the talk to enlighten people about what we go through when we transition.

People at the talk were intrigued about my transition. I made it a question and answer session at the end because they had so many questions to ask. They said I was very inspiring.”

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Shay, who is from Billing, has his own website and runs support groups to help other people through their transition journey.

He has even written his own book called ‘Sal to Shay’, which he says is selling really well.

Shay added: “There are not enough places people can go to feel safe in the environment they want to be in, especially in Northampton.

“I wanted to put out there what I couldn’t find, like what will happen day to day and step by step.

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“It’s not just people transitioning, but also partners, parents and friends to understand what they are going through. It’s helping so many people out there.

“I often sit up all night on my phone catching up on questions because people have so many questions.

“I just do it because I love it.”

Shay, who also works as a tyre fitter, thinks it is this commitment to the LGBTQ+ community that has earned him the award nomination.

He said: “It’s an award ceremony for dedication in our community. It hasn’t been running that long.

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“It’s about how much somebody contributes to being a positive role model within the LGBTQ community.

“Over the last 24 hours I am getting so many lovely comments on the nomination. It’s just amazing what these people think about me, I don’t believe it.”

Nominations for the award close at the end of May, the shortlist will be announced in June and the award ceremony will be held in September.

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