I can still be who I am

A group from Uniting at the 2017 Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras parade, their banner says "Love is Power"

I can still be who I am

A new program aiming to make services in the aged care, health, human services and wellbeing sectors more inclusive of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) people was launched in Sydney last week. The Pride in Health and Wellbeing program was created by the NSW LGBTI health organisation ACON as part of its Pride Inclusion Programs.

At Uniting we celebrate diversity and welcome all people regardless of lifestyle choices, ethnicity, faith, sexual orientation or gender identity. To show our commitment to this inclusion and celebration, Uniting became a foundation member of Pride in Health and Wellbeing, and hosted its launch. “Uniting is proud to stand with LGBTI communities including our customers, staff and visitors and actively celebrate difference. Each of our services, from aged care through to chaplaincy, is backed by an organisation-wide commitment to inclusion and diversity. We welcome all people irrespective of sexual orientation, gender expression, gender identity, or intersex status,” said Peter Worland, Uniting Executive Director.

In 2015 Uniting’s aged care and corporate services were accredited with the Rainbow Tick, and Uniting was the first not-for-profit and faith-based aged care provider to be officially recognised as LGBTI–friendly. We’ve also been recognised as one of Australia’s most inclusive employers several years in a row by Pride in Diversity’s Australian Workplace Equity Index (AWEI) awards, and continue to be a visible advocate for LGBTI rights across the health and wellbeing sector.

Uniting Locke Haven resident Bernette Redwood attended ACON’s launch. Being gay and Jewish, she said that she was apprehensive at first at the thought of living in a Christian aged-care home but she felt that Uniting was safe, welcoming and inclusive and allowed her to express and celebrate all parts of her identity, to bring her whole self.

“I still feel I’m Bernette. I’m gay, I’m Jewish and that’s incredible to me.” Ms Redwood told the launch in her video presentation.

Bernette marched with Uniting at last year’s Mardi Gras and loved it! “It made me feel accepted.” she said. A photo of the march is proudly hung on the wall beside the main television at Uniting Locke Haven.

Get in touch

Find out more about our inclusive aged care services by calling 1800 864 846 or email us.

Watch Bernette’s story

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  • Dianne Latter
    Posted at 10:55h, 23 August Reply

    Well done Bernette- a wonderful story!!

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