Championing inclusivity and diversity in later life care
Comfort, pride, and dignity are all fundamental parts of caregiving. At Birchwood Care Services, it is paramount that everyone feels comfortable and confident, from service providers to service receivers. Pride month has given us an opportunity to reflect on how we support our LGBTQ+ community and reinforce our commitment to diversity, equality, and inclusion.
Creating safe spaces
We are always conscious of creating safe, comfortable spaces for both staff and clients. When it comes to protecting and supporting the LGBTQ+ community, Birchwood Care Services is dedicated to fostering an environment free from discrimination, where everyone is encouraged to express their authentic selves. A prominent feature of our job description is our commitment to embodying this acronym:
Building on this, we recognise that it’s important to proactively work towards preventing and addressing incidents of homophobia, transphobia, or discrimination.
Developing cultural competence
Birchwood Care Services staff undergo regular detailed training and professional development to enhance their understanding of LGBTQ+ issues and terminology, as well as the challenges faced by people in this community. This is an integral aspect of care service delivery, allowing the team to ensure that clients, their families, and our employees received the best, inclusive care and support.
Inclusive policies and practices
As structural amends are a key component of ensuring inclusivity, we have implemented policies and practices that promote, respect and protect the rights of LGBTQ+ individuals. For instance, recruitment processes are guided by non-discriminatory hiring practices and equal opportunities for advancement. We continuously evaluate and refine our policies to ensure they align with best practices and legal requirements.
Birchwood Care Services’ protocols also make strides to be inclusive at every turn and ensure that personal comfort is prioritised for each individual. The process for developing care plans is inclusive of clients’ gender identity and personal preferences to ensure that services going forward are considered, personalised, and genuine. For example, pronouns are always asked for and used appropriately.
Standing proud together
As both a business and a service provider, we are always working to be at our best, evolving and adapting to ensure our policies and practices are proactive and effective. By creating a welcoming environment and offering support and care that is sensitive to the unique needs of LGBTQ+ individuals, Birchwood Care Services strives to make a positive impact in the lives of those we serve and employ. Together, we stand proud, united, and compassionate as we celebrate the rich tapestry of humanity not only during pride month, but all those that come before and after.