June each year across the world is also known as ‘Pride Month’ and celebrates the diversity of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex community.
It’s a time to reflect on just how far civil rights have progressed in half a century and an opportunity to protest discrimination and violence.
Australia is at the forefront of the push towards true equality and inclusion for LGBTIQ+ people and that includes our aged care community.
Approximately 1 in 10 people in Australia identify as LGBTIQ+.
Supporting and participating in Pride Month activities is an opportunity to increase the awareness of the diversity in your community, create a spirit of inclusion and to celebrate your LGBTIQ+ older people and staff.
It’s also an opportunity to reflect on past experiences and future progress opportunities.
A few ideas your organisation could consider to celebrate Pride month include:
- hold a ‘wear bright colours’ day
- host a Pride party, for example a rainbow morning tea
- wear rainbow badges, stickers or ally pins
- attend a local Pride march or other Pride month events in your community
- book an LGBTIQ+ speaker from your local LGBTIQ+ Health Organisation
- host a movie screening of an uplifting movie, such as British comedy gem, Pride.
The need to deliver safe and inclusive services to people with diverse needs and experiences is part of the Aged Care Quality Standards:
- Standard 1 highlights the need for Aged Care providers to provide a culture of inclusion and respect for all consumers
- enabling consumers to participate in community events important to them may help you meet the requirements of Standard 4 – to provide the supports and connections that are important to the consumer’s health and wellbeing.
You could take this opportunity to evaluate your diversity policies or hold a diversity planning workshop.
Actions to support LGBTIQ+ elders: a guide for aged care providers has been developed to highlight important steps in providing respectful and inclusive services in the aged care sector which could be useful in your planning session.