Health trust ranked highly for work with LGBT staff

Patrick Price, Northumbria Healthcare's equality and diversity and LGBT lead and champion.
Patrick Price, Northumbria Healthcare's equality and diversity and LGBT lead and champion.

Health officials are celebrating after again being named among Britain’s best employers for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) staff.

Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust was placed in Stonewall’s 2018 Workplace Equality Index, which lists the top 100 employers in the country.

In the last year, the trust has promoted equality and diversity in a range of ways, including introducing additional policies and codes of conduct to improve support for LGBT staff and patients, specific staff training and enhanced data collection methods.

The trust developed a community role models network for people who identify as LGBT or Black and Minority Ethnic (BAME) to help improve access to healthcare.

Jim Mackey, Chief Executive, said: “I’m very proud that we have been named as one of the top 100 employers in the Stonewall Workplace Equality Index for the fifth consecutive year.”

“Our ranking has improved considerably this year, which is reflective of the strength of our staff network and our commitment to diversity in our workforce through engaging with staff and the public in order to improve the health of lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans people.”

Darron Towers, Executive Director at Stonewall, said: “Northumbria Healthcare and all those who have made this year’s Top 100 Employers list have done a fantastic job.

“Taking part in our index shows real commitment to understanding and advancing LGBT equality.

“This year, for the first time, the index looked at what employers were doing for trans equality. This work is crucial.”

“We recently published LGBT in Britain: Trans Report, which revealed the profound inequality facing trans people in Britain today. Half of trans people have hidden their identity at work for fear of discrimination.

“This must change and it’s encouraging to see so many organisations make a commitment to trans equality.

“With their support and hard work we can create a world where all lesbian, gay, bi and trans employees are welcomed and accepted without exception.”