Pride season is the highlight of the LGBT+ calendar, when NELFT marches to celebrate our LGBT+ community. Each year, during the month of June, the LGBT community across the globe celebrates Pride. The month of June was chosen in order to commemorate the Stonewall Riots that took place in June 1969. Pride Month is important because it marks the start of what was a huge change within the LGBT+ community, and wider society.
NHS England and NHS Improvement’s LGBT+ Staff Network is holding ‘NHS Virtual Pride’ online from 6pm on Friday 26 June and they have extended this celebration to the whole of the health service, for all LGBT+ colleagues and allies.
At NELFT, the day will also be marked with the release of the NELFT Coming Out guide. ‘Coming out’ is a process of understanding, accepting, and valuing your sexual orientation/identity. This can mean sharing with others that you are lesbian, gay, bi and/or trans (LGBT). Coming out can be a very difficult process and the NELFT ‘Coming Out’ guide will share advice and tips to help anyone going through this process.
One of the ways the Trust is committed to the Equality Act and the NHS Equality Delivery System is through the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Trans staff network (LGBT) which is supported by the Trust Equality and Diversity Team. This network is a confidential and safe environment for members to receive support, advice and guidance.
Some of the work the LGBT+ Network have done include the Allies Scheme and the Rainbow Lanyard Scheme. The hugely successful 'Rainbow Lanyard Scheme' is focused around providing colleagues and patients with the best experience by creating a network of 'allies', staff members across NELFT who pledge to support their LGBT+ colleagues and patients.
Educational materials have also been produced to give allies a little more understanding of the different identities of the LGBT+ community and terminology that is acceptable and not. Some unacceptable terms are listed in the latest LGBT+ microaggressions poster here: Microagressions Poster 3.pdf [pdf] 174KB.
Photographs: London Pride parade 2019
This year, the theme of Pride London is #YouMeUsWe. It calls on each of us to reach out and understand one another, demanding us to be better allies within our own community. To find out more go to: Pride in London.
Follow NELFT on Twitter @NELFT, Facebook @NHSNELFT or Instagram @nelft_nhs to get involved in the discussion and celebration in the lead up to NHS Virtual Pride. To follow along with the virtual pride festivities or to get involved, search #NHSVirtualPride on Twitter.