Hospital flies the flag to fight homophobia

Hospital flies the flag to fight homophobia

The rainbow flag will be flying over the Cumberland Infirmary today, Tuesday 17 May, to show support for International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia (IDAHO).

Alan Davidson (in the suit), Director of Estates and Facilities at North Cumbria University Hospitals; Joan Joyce, Interim Head of Equality and Diversity for the Trust; and Barry Gent, of Interserve, hoisting the flag

North Cumbria University Hospitals NHS Trust is backing the campaign by the Lesbian & Gay Foundation (LGF), which encourages public buildings, public spaces and organisations to fly the flag once a year to publicise the day of awareness.

The campaign is centred on Greater Manchester, where last year more than 200 NHS trusts and buildings, local authorities, public libraries, colleges, police buildings, fire stations, train stations, parks, leisure centres, prisons and schools all displayed the rainbow flag.

This year the LGF is encouraging organisations throughout the North West and the UK to take part. Damian Gallagher, Director of Human Resources and Organisational Development for North Cumbria University Hospitals NHS Trust, explained the decision to join in.

Our Trust is committed to delivering equality of opportunity for all of our patients and staff and we strive to eliminate any unlawful discrimination within our hospitals,” Mr Gallagher said. “Flying the rainbow flag on 17 May is a good way of demonstrating our commitment to treating everyone fairly and equally, whatever their sexual orientation.

Hopefully the flag will act as a visual reminder to anyone coming to the Cumberland Infirmary on Tuesday – be they staff, patients or visitors – that we will not tolerate discrimination on our premises.”

North Cumbria University Hospitals NHS Trust uses equality impact assessments to check that all functions, services, policies or procedures are not significantly disadvantaging people because of their sexual orientation.

To find out more about International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia, visit www.lgf.org.uk.