A charity founded by a group of individuals who had been affected by the legislation ‘section 28’, which was designed to prevent the promotion of homosexuality in schools. The aim of Stonewall was to create a professional lobbying group that would prevent organisational attacks on lesbians, gay, bi and trans (LGBT) people.
Most improved organisation on Stonewall’s Workplace Equality Index
Stonewall has announced that Barts Health is the most improved organisation in the history of Stonewall’s Workplace Equality Index (WEI), ranking 189/500 which is a great improvement on last year’s score of 393/445. Stonewall explained the reason for such a vast improvement was due to Barts Health having a better LGBTQ+ presence throughout the hospital sites, as a result of appointing LGBTQ+ site leads. The introduction of allies at the trust has also increased staff awareness of the LGBTQ+ network and the use of social media has provided a platform for discussion and the sharing of events and achievements. This year brings even more expansions for the LGBTQ+ network including the appointment of a lead for Pride and also a plan to assign a bi-rep and a trans-rep across the trust.
Congratulations to Dr Sarah Perkins for winning Stonewell’s Ally of the Year Award
The term ‘ally’ describes people who believe in, and act to advance, LGBTQ+ equality. They can be members and non-members of the LGBTQ+ community and share the same goal, of being an active friend or supporter to others and create a place where people are accepted without exception.
Newham A&E consultant, Dr Sarah Perkins, is a non-LGBTQ+ ally and was integral in the creation of the Royal London A&E LGBTQ+ group, which was founded in August 2018.
Among other great things, Stonewall has recognised Sarah’s work to create a 'diversity door' in A&E – a resource featuring information about LGBTQ+ patients, referral pathways and more. After being awarded Stonewall’s Ally of the Year 2020, Sarah commented: “Whatever your position within an organisation, you have the ability to educate and influence others. Human relationships are powerful things, and never underestimate what positive changes you can affect for your colleagues and service users simply by demonstrating supportive, kind behaviours”.
Thank you Sarah for your dedicated contribution to this important cause.
Interested in becoming and ally? Here are five ways to become one:
1. Educate and empower yourself about the LGBT community
2. Listen and be respectful
3. Be visible and challenge negativity, if safe to do so.
4. Influence others and amplify the voices of LGBT communities
5. Being an ally goes beyond just LGBT, it’s about listening to and learning from others experiences and supporting them.
We are also rolling out a trust wide LGBTQ+ ally training programme through the education academy and we're pushing to make the network a more social community of LGBTQ+ staff and allies.