TV star Olly Alexander has said it would “make everybody’s lives better” if queer history was taught more extensively in schools.
Alexander starred in Channel 4 drama It’s a Sin earlier this year, which tells the story of a group of young friends living through the HIV/AIDS crisis in the 1980s.
The actor and musician, 30, told Cosmopolitan UK that he had “seen a lot of different responses” to the hit show.
It's a Sin: Life as a gay teacher in the era of AIDS
Alexander added that there were “quite a few younger people that had no idea… that this happened to a community not that long ago”.
LGBT education: It's a Sin star supports the teaching of queer history in schools
“It set me aback because I hadn’t thought about that response, but it totally makes sense,” he said.
“You’re watching a show set not that long ago. And so there are some people who are shocked and can’t believe it.
“But I’ve also had that response from older people who were there at the time who didn’t know what was going on.”
He added: “So much of this happened in silence and was brushed under the carpet.
“And this isn’t taught in schools. It would make everybody’s lives better, and help understand each other better, if queer history [was covered].
“How HIV first appeared and what happened in the ’80s is a really important part of that.
“If there’s something you can do to help all the kids, why wouldn’t you do it?”
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Picture courtesy of Cosmopolitan UK/Kaj Jefferies