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SCFT's LGBT+ Network Chair on Pride in the NHS Week

Date: 06 September 2021

Time: 10:00

Given the challenges we’ve faced as a Trust in the past 18 months because of COVID-19, and the ongoing pressures across the NHS, it has never been more important to ensure that we focus on being a diverse and inclusive organisation. 

COVID-19 has also highlighted clear disparities in health amongst many different communities, including people who identify as LGBT+, which is another reason why Pride in the NHS Week is so important. 

As Chair of SCFT’s LBGT+ Staff Network, I want all of our LGBT+ staff to be able to bring their true selves to work, to feel comfortable and safe in the knowledge that they can be who they really are amongst their colleagues and with their patients. 

For me, this isn’t an optional extra or added advantage that the Trust can bolt on when time allows, but a vital part of our work to improve the wellbeing of our staff and to enable them to deliver safe, effective and responsive services. 

It’s very simple: if our LGBT+ staff can bring their whole selves to work, and feel safe and comfortable doing so, they are far more likely to provide the excellent care at the heart of the community that we are striving for. 

This is why I’m so pleased that SCFT is supporting the very first Pride in the NHS Week, a week-long event designed to recognise and celebrate the contributions and achievements of LGBT+ people working across the NHS. 

Organised by the NHS England National People Team with the theme of ‘educate, elevate and celebrate’, the event offers virtual seminars, social events and training opportunities to all NHS workers, with sessions on topics including blood donation, trans and non-binary allyship, and LGBT+ health inequalities. It culminates on Friday with NHS Virtual Pride. 

I encourage everyone to get involved and to think about what you can do to enhance our inclusive workplace culture, not just for LGBT+ staff but for people from all of the diverse communities that make up our Trust. 

Pride in the NHS Week is also an opportunity for our LGBT+ Network to celebrate our achievements and consider the challenges that lie ahead. 

We’ve recently updated our logo, branding and lanyards to incorporate the Progress Pride Flag colours; secured funding for gender identity awareness training, which starts in September; given staff the opportunity to have their pronouns added to SCFT identity cards; and worked with our Disability and Wellbeing Network to roll out gender neutral accessible toilet signage across the Trust. 

We’re now looking forward to taking part in SCFT’s Staff Networks Week, from 20 to 25 September, and working to continue improving the diversity and inclusion of our workplace culture for all of our members, particularly those from our trans community. 

And as always, we’ll be here for you. Please get in touch if you need us. 

Email us at sc-tr.lgbtnetwork@nhs.net or for further information, please click here

Further information about Pride in the NHS Week and NHS Virtual Pride is available here and here.