This February we are celebrating LGBT+ History Month
This February, we are proud to honour LGBT+ History Month, a month-long annual celebration and remembrance of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender history. It looks back at the history of gay rights and celebrates how far we have come in the fight for equality. The month aims to educate out prejudice and make LGBT+ people visible in all their rich diversity. For allies, it's a chance to better understand the struggles that LGBT+ people face and how to better support them.
LGBT+ History Month began in the USA in 1994 as a result of Black History Month. It was started by a high school teacher named Rodney Wilson. While teaching about the Nazis, Wilson revealed to his class that he was gay and told them that this was something he could have been killed for.
In the UK, LGBT+ History Month has been an annual event since 2005. The overall aims of the month are to promote equality and diversity.
This is done by:
- Increasing the visibility of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (“LGBT+”) people, their history, lives and their experiences in educational and other institutions, and the wider community.
- Raising awareness and advancing education on matters affecting the LGBT+ community.
- Working to make educational and other institutions safe spaces for all LGBT+ communities.
- Promoting the welfare of LGBT+ people, by ensuring that the education system recognises and enables LGBT+ people to achieve their full potential, so they contribute fully to society and lead fulfilled lives, thus benefiting society as a whole.
At CLCH, we want everyone to feel safe, part of our community and proud to be who they are – no matter whether they are staff, patients or public. However, recent Stonewall research has demonstrated that the specific needs of gay people are too often overlooked in the provision of healthcare and that lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender patients and employees continue to face discrimination, sometimes inadvertent, across the NHS. We want to help change that by role modelling inclusive, welcoming behaviour.
In addition, recognition and celebration of LGBT+ History Month lines up with our Equality Strategy. It is particularly covered by an objective in the Workforce Equality Campaign, which states that the Trust will promote representation and voice of staff at all levels by strengthening existing staff networks and supporting them in continuing to develop and work together.
Across this month you will see weekly articles celebrating people from the LGBT+ community throughout history, and blogs from some of our staff. We hope you enjoy reading these and learning more about the fantastic LGBT+ community, their history and the fight for their rights.
To find out more about LGBT+ History Month, and to access resources such as posters, social media frames and banners, visit the LGBT+ History month website.