LGBTIQA+ inclusion

We welcome lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, gender diverse, non-binary, intersex and asexual (LGBTQIA+) people.

cohealth has a long standing commitment to promoting human rights and health equity. We recognise that LGBTIQA+ people face significant barriers accessing health care services and employment and are committed to removing these barriers and working towards health equity. We strive for LGBTIQA+ health equity and our aim is that all LGBTIQA+ staff and clients have a safe, inclusive and affirmative experience of cohealth, every time. 

Diversity and Inclusion Strategy

cohealth has a Diversity & Inclusion Strategy for 2020 – 2023. This strategy articulates cohealth’s commitment to provide culturally safe and inclusive services and work environments as a matter of core business. It sets out our diversity and inclusion vision, strategic goals and the steps we will take to impact change.

Diversity & Inclusion Strategy for 2020 – 2023

The Diversity & Inclusion Strategy draws on the information gathered and themes identified in the review of cohealth’s previous equity plans. Its development is based on consumer, staff and partner agency consultation, in addition to a comprehensive literature review of best practice for achieving equity and inclusion within health and…

Download PDF - 5.1 MB

LGBTQIA+ safe environments

cohealth is dedicated to creating safe and respectful environments, for people accessing our services and for our staff. We value collaboration and feedback from all LGBTIQA+ clients and staff so we can continue to improve our delivery of safe and responsive services and workplaces.

We work to ensure our physical environments are visually welcoming, and regularly audit spaces to review accessibility, safety and inclusion.

Rainbow tick accreditation

As part of our commitment to becoming a more LGBTIQA+ inclusive service and workplace, cohealth is working towards Rainbow Tick Accreditation. The Rainbow Tick Accreditation processsupports organisations to understand and implement LGBTI safe, affirming and inclusive service delivery and employment and provides national recognition for those that meet the Rainbow Tick Standards.

We are currently going through this audit process and making changes to ensure our services, workplaces, systems and policies are all LGBTIQA+ safe, inclusive and affirming. We will be going through this accreditation at the end of 2021.

Staff Training

All our staff have or are currently being trained in LGBTIQA+ inclusion. This training is to ensure staff are aware of the issues faced by LGBTIQA+ people when accessing health services and employment. Also so staff develop the awareness and skills to create safe and affirming experiences for LGBTIQA+ people.

Consumer Participation

We want to hear from you. cohealth supports our consumers and community members to be involved in advisory group meetings. This is where we talk to people about the way we work and services we provide to make sure they are meeting the needs of the community we serve.

At the community advisory group meetings Community Advisors share how services impact them based on their lived experience. We want to hear how our organisation can best support the diverse needs of our community. Find out more about Community participation or contact participation@cohealth.org.au to inquire about becoming a community advisor.

Inclusion in the workplace

Our inclusive workplace culture enables staff to bring their whole selves to work, where uniqueness is valued, and people experience a feeling of belonging. All staff connect over a shared passion of promoting human rights, it’s central to our culture.

cohealth conducts an annual staff diversity survey to help us better understand the people who work at cohealth and how we can continue to improve, including:

  • initiatives that improve recruitment, staff support and professional growth/advancement
  • targeted staff professional development opportunities
  • advocacy priorities
  • improving systems and processes to be more inclusive and affirmative

cohealth has a staff LGBTIQA+ group for staff to come together and discuss issues affecting them as well as organising involvement in community events such as Midsumma and Tilde film festival.

Learn more about our workplace culture on the dedicated cohealth careers website

Bathrooms

cohealth supports the right of trans, gender diverse and non-binary people to use the toilets they feel most comfortable with.

Image of a circle sticker with 'welcome' written in different languages in the background. On the foreground it says 'trans, gender diverse and non-binary people are welcome in here. Please use the toilet of your choice.

Policy submissions

cohealth proactively and responsively develops policy submissions to represent and promote our position on key areas of policy and social debate.

Victorian LGBTQI strategy August 2020 (Download PDF – 178KB)

Religious discrimination bill 2019 – second exposure draft – January 2020 (Download PDF – 117KB)

Helpful resources

Trans gender diverse inclusion guide (PDF 1.6MB)

Pronouns (PDF 298KB)

Creating safe environments (PDF 672KB)

Find out more

For more information on some of the work being done, get in touch our Diversity Manager, Apoorva Charukonda.

Email: Apoorva.Charukonda@cohealth.org.au

Phone: 9448 6702

About us

cohealth is a not-for-profit community health organisation. We provide essential health and support services in Melbourne’s CBD, and northern and western suburbs.

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