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GLBTI Sensitivity Training for Aged Care Gets Funding

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Aged care homes throughout NSW will receive targeted training to improve their understanding of the needs of older gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender (GLBT) people.

The training will be delivered by ACON in partnership with the Aged and Community Services Association NSW & ACT (ACS) with funding from the federal Department of Health and Ageing.

The training will be held in 12 workshops across the state and ACON will develop a resource for aged care staff.

The program will then be evaluated and expanded to other parts of Australia if it is found to be successful.

The Executive Director of the National LGBT Health Alliance, Gabi Rosenstreich welcomed the funding.

She said the program was an important first step but she argued that the government had to go further by including GLBT as a special needs group in the Aged Care Act.

“Currently it’s a group that has specific issues and is marginalised within the aged care agenda,” she said.

“By defining LGBT people as a special needs group, it will enable the specific issues of that group to be addressed when policies and programs are developed broadly.

“At the moment, when people say a program is open to everybody, that ‘everybody’ doesn’t include LGBT people.”

The CEO of ACS, Jill Pretty said many of the association’s members are already investigating ways to provide more appropriate care to GLBT clients.

“All individuals within aged care deserve to be treated with respect and be cared for in a safe and inclusive environment,” She said.

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