The NHS Confederation has today launched the Health and Care LGBTQ+ Leaders Network to transform the NHS so that members of the LGBTQ+ community can be assured of equal treatment, receive the best care and work in an inclusive environment where they can thrive.
The network is made up of both LGBTQ+ leaders and allies from a range of roles, skills and backgrounds across health and care and will provide a platform for the community to listen, share and engage with their peers and allies.
The aim is to build a social movement of LGBTQ+ people and their allies who aspire to leadership roles in the NHS to help bring about change across the system.
The network will work collaboratively to engage with the LGBTQ+ community, allies, wider NHS leadership and other organisations such as professional bodies, trades unions and voluntary organisations, with a view to:
• Increasing numbers and visibility of LGBTQ+ on boards and in senior leadership across healthcare;
• Improving the experience of LGBTQ+ staff and increasing value across all NHS organisations;
• Improving the experience of LGBTQ+ patients.
The network will aim to make tangible changes with real impact, such as developing living libraries to promote greater visibility, reducing sickness absence and improving retention of LGBTQ+ staff, and developing metrics of patient experience.
Members will be able to connect with peers from across health and care and other relevant bodies, as well as participating in discussions and sharing knowledge. The network will offer an opportunity for members to make their voices heard and influence change across the system.
Peter Molyneux, Chair of Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust and Chair of the Health and Care LGBTQ+ Network said:
“In the 51 years since the riot at the Stonewall Inn the LGBTQ+ community has come a long way. However, there is still a long way to go. As James Baldwin, said: ‘not everything that is faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed until it is faced’.
“This network will help us to face the challenges we have in health and care and to provide the visible leadership and support for staff necessary to ensure that everyone in the LGBTQ+ community receives the best care or works in an inclusive environment where they can thrive”.
Layla McCay, a director at the NHS Confederation, said:
“The time is here to come together and make equality a reality for LGBTQ+ people in health and care. I am struck by two persistent injustices faced by LGBTQ+ staff and patients: career prospects and health outcomes.
“We want this Network to help our health and care sectors be fantastic places to work for LGBTQ+ people, and for LGBTQ+ people to be able to access the inclusive health and care services they need and deserve. I hope the Network will enable LGBTQ+ people to make our voices heard and together drive the changes we need to flourish.”
Niall Dickson, the NHS Confederation CEO said:
“I am confident that this new network will be a force for change, for inclusion and for equality in the NHS and wider care system. The nature of leadership in health and care is changing for the better, but if we are to deliver the transformation that is required, we need to do more to nurture and support the talent that surrounds us. The NHS Confederation is proud to host the Health & Care Women Leaders’ Network the BME Leadership Network and this latest addition to our family will bring a new dimension to all our work. “
Follow the network on Twitter - @NHSC_LGBTQ
Keep up to date with network news and activities by registering here.