Rob McDowall is a thirty-five year old equality and human rights advocate born and raised in Gourock. Now living in Glasgow - McDowall has campaigned and lobbied on a range of equality and human rights cases over the last 18 years and has contributed to a number of publications including the Huffington Post, Gaystarnews, The Metro, EHR, Commonspace and AnyVoices. Over the years, Rob has provided representation and support to vulnerable LGBT asylum seekers and has been 'highly critical of government attempts to deport LGBT asylum seekers with the advice that they return home and 'live discreetly'.
In 2008 Rob petitioned the Scottish Parliament to challenge the outright ban on men who have sex with men from donating blood. In 2009 Rob led the LGBT Network which petitioned the Scottish Parliament to deliver marriage equality within Scotland. In addition to working with Strathclyde and Tayside Police in order to improve equality training for police officers and frontline support staff; Rob has worked with the Scottish Court Service at Glasgow Sheriff Court to improve staff awareness of accessibility for disabled people and publicise the assisted hearing technology available within the busiest criminal court in Europe.
Lately Rob has been a member of a Scottish Government core group which helped write the charter underpinning the work of the new Social Security agency in Scotland. His current involvement includes membership of the group writing the measurement framework by which the new social security agency will have its work and impact assessed. Rob lives with a number of life limiting conditions including chronic pain, crohns disease, depression, chronic pancreatic dysfunction and M.E. He is a outspoken advocate for the legalisation of cannabis for use in chronic pain and terminal illness.