The fabulous Arcare Parkwood facility on Queensland’s Gold Coast has officially received its Rainbow Tick Accreditation.
The Rainbow Tick Accreditation Program supports health and community organisations to understand and implement LGBTQIA+ safe and inclusive service delivery and provides national recognition for those that meet the Rainbow Tick Standards.
The program is voluntary and aims to assist organisations to move from friendly to inclusive. This also reassures LGBTQIA+ consumers and staff that an organisation is aware of, is responsive to and is understanding of their needs.
Arcare CEO Colin Singh says the organisation are naturally thrilled with the achievement.
“We’re extremely proud to receive a successful Rainbow Tick Accreditation for Arcare Parkwood – the first LGBTIQ+ inclusive residence in Queensland,” he says.
“We look forward to creating a community that continues to celebrate diversity and inclusivity.”
Established in 2019, Arcare Parkwood was born out of the experiences and commitment of Gold Coast local Trudi Murray, who had seen a close relative experience discrimination in another aged care setting.
With the help of associate Ann Robilotta, the two embarked on securing a development application to build Queensland’s first LGBTIQ+ inclusive aged care residence.
While Murray and Robilotta had government support for 60 LGBTIQ+ bed licenses, building and operating an aged care residence is a huge undertaking.
Mindful that they required additional support, guidance and sector expertise, they approached leading provider Arcare, as they felt the values-driven organisation would ‘do it right’ based on their experience.
Construction on Arcare Parkwood commenced in November 2018.
In April 2019, the facility was awarded another 30 bed licenses – bringing the total number of suites to 90.
Arcare Parkwood held its public open day on November 9, 2019 and welcomed its first clients on Monday, November 11, 2019.
On Friday, December 17, 2021, Arcare Parkwood officially received its Rainbow Tick Accreditation, as per the Quality Innovation Performance Accreditation Report.
Residence manager Sue Falzon says it’s been wonderful to see their community come together to achieve this.
“We believe it’s important to bring awareness and achieving the Rainbow Tick Accreditation sets Arcare Parkwood at the forefront of LGBTIQ+ inclusivity in the aged care sector.”
“Everyone who joins the Arcare Parkwood Community is supported by our unique Relationship-First Approach where nurturing honest, respectful and consistent relationships with residents and their loved ones is at the heart of what we do.”
Accreditors gave notable mention to the following steps that Arcare Parkwood undertook to achieve their Rainbow Tick Accreditation:
- Silver Rainbow training (LGBTIQ+ aged care awareness) undertaken and the attention to achieving the next level of professional development in the aged care LGBTIQ+ inclusive space;
- Team members at all levels were unanimous in their identification of the support and resources they have received in relation to enable better practice. In particular, the training they had access to and the opportunities to further their skills and knowledge;
- The work undertaken around consumer engagement and consultations through the LGBTIQ+ community advisory group and more;
- The consideration given to moving ‘beyond the tick’;
- The pride team members take in their connection to Arcare Parkwood. Many team members spoke of their lived experience and their own sexual identity and how they have felt safe, with an ability to be truly who they are in the workplace;
- The participation in the 2021 SBS documentary series ‘What Does Australia Really Think About’ with the focus on ageing and LGBTIQ+ inclusion. Link to Episode here.
Arcare Parkwood thanks their team members, residents and their families and loved ones who were involved in the assessment process by sharing their knowledge and experience.
To learn more about the Rainbow Tick Accreditation Program, click here.