Kerang District Health supports inclusive practice for people that identify as Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex (LGBTI) and strives for an environment that creates:
- A positive, respectful, supportive and fair work environment where employee differences are respected, valued and utilised to create a productive and collaborative work place.
- Improved health experience and outcomes for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex people. A quality health service provides safe, sensitive and high quality care for everyone.
Kerang District Health is committed to:
- An inclusive environment where LGBTI people feel physically, spiritually and emotionally safe;
- Using appropriate language that is respectful and aligned with how a person identifies themselves;
- Providing LGBTI sensitive practices; providing education and training for staff to equip them with the skills and knowledge required to support and work with LGBTI people.
Many older LGBTI people have lived through a time when disclosing their sexual orientation or gender identity could result in imprisonment, forced medical “cures”, loss of employment, family and friends.
Consequently, many older people learned to hide their sexual orientation or gender identity to be safe.
Older LGBTI people were subjected to discrimination from a range of government organisations, police, churches, the community and their family.
Homosexuality was criminalised throughout Australia and conviction could have meant incareration. Gay men and transgender people were regularly subjected to police harassment and entrapment.
The historical experiences of older LGBTI people have had a significant effect on their health and wellbeing as well as their fears about discrimination when accessing services.
As a consequence
- Some older LGBTI people have been relatively invisible; many have a network of ‘chosen’ family or friends rather than genetic family ties, while some may have few social connections.
- Have never known a time when they have felt safe disclosing their sexual/gender identity.
- Have ‘straightened up’ their lives in order to stay safe.
- May revisit historical trauma when encountering discrimination.
The consequences of this invisibility for older people are significant.
Kerang District Health and Glenarm Aged Care are inclusive services and welcome diversity within our community.
Support through switchboard.org.au or telephone 1800 184 527
Support for LGBTI carers on Carer Advisory Line 1800 242 636 or www.carersvictoria.org.au/how-we-help/LGBTI-carers