LGBTQ+ history month: what have we achieved?
We are incredibly proud of what we have achieved as a network over the last few years. We started out as three people in The Royal London Hospital, and have grown into a community of 200+ active members and allies across all sites.
Our network has grown not only in numbers, but in confidence in what we do. We are not experts in the field of LGBTQ+ rights, but we have been guided by our sense of what is right and the general principle of inclusion. Above all, we want to ensure that people who identify as LGBTQ+ feel they can be their true selves at work.
We are first and foremost a staff network, but our members are keen to widen our focus to patients and the community – a key ambition of the WeBelong strategy.
Going forward, we plan to work closely with the other diversity networks and the inclusion team, to ensure our objectives complement the wider WeBelong strategy and ensure intersectionality is weaved into our every day practices.
Reflections on our network: what have we achieved?
We’ve built a strong and supportive network of LGBTQ staff and allies
Barts Health signed up to be a Stonewall Diversity Champion, and we have improved our performance in the Work Equality Index, ranking 186th out of 500 featured companies and organisations, and 23rd within the health and social care sector
We introduced Trans Equality Guidelines
We developed an LGBTQ+ ally teaching programme accessible to all staff
We hosted inspiring LGBTQ+ events and seminars, with local and national LGBTQ+ NHS leaders, change makers and patients as guest speakers
We launched the rainbow badge scheme across all our hospitals, creating a team of staff who have pledged to identify as someone for patients and staff to talk to about LGBTQ+ issues and direct them to appropriate support and guidance
We increased visibility amongst senior leadership particularly through our executive sponsors
We joined forces with other NHS LGBTQ+ staff groups in London to create a network across north east London and beyond sharing ideas and working together to improve the LGBTQ+ experience for our colleagues and patients
We hope that staff continue to represent themselves and their identity, particularly in things such as our annual staff survey. The more we understand about our diversity and staff experiences, the more we can do to support and make trust-wide changes.
We are so grateful for all members of our network, and we are also grateful to have the support of so many allies across Barts Health, too.