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Community and mental health services for Southampton, Portsmouth and parts of Hampshire and the Isle of Wight.


Solent NHS Trust flying the flag for LGBT+ History Month

Solent NHS Trust is showing its support for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, Plus (LGBT+) History Month with a series of events for colleagues.

Colleagues from across the Trust joined in the celebrations at a launch event on Monday, 3 February 2020, arranged by its LGBT+&Allies Resource Group.

This year’s international theme for the month is ‘Poetry, Prose and Plays’, and as part of Solent’s ongoing commitment to inclusion and diversity, the resource group has been busy planning activities throughout the month to celebrate key historic Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans+ milestones and raise awareness of LGBT+ issues that are relevant to everyone today.

As part of the event, the Trust held a Schwartz Round – a monthly forum where staff can openly and confidentially discuss reflections around a particular topic. The title of the round was ‘To Thine Own Self Be True’ – a quote from Shakespeare’s Hamlet, where colleagues talked about LGBT+ themes.

The launch event also saw the Trust hand out its 1,000th NHS Rainbow Badge. By wearing the badge, colleagues are sending a message that service users and other colleagues can freely talk about LGBT+ issues with them in a safe space, they will be listened to without prejudice and they can be signposted to appropriate support where needed.

At the end of February the LGBT+ history month will conclude with colleagues being invited to the Solent Stories event, where they can ‘borrow’ an LGBT-related human book, listen to that person’s story and have the chance to ask questions they may not otherwise have an opportunity to ask.

Dr Joseph Bagley, Convenor of the Solent NHS Trust LGBT+&Allies Resource Group, said: “I am incredibly humbled, grateful and proud to have launched LGBT+ History month on behalf of Solent NHS Trust and our Resource Group.

“We know that people work better when they are able to be themselves. When individuals feel safe and truly able to do this, without constantly self-checking and inhibiting their talents or traits, it allows them to utilise an energy source they didn’t realise they had. This energy can help drive positivity, innovation and inclusive change within our Trust. Leaders and managers are truly authentic when they proactively facilitate their teams to feel able to be open and authentic too. This will make our services more inclusive and a safe space for our service users.

“We are committed to being an open, non-judgemental and inclusive place for both our colleagues and our patients.”

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