Launch of the new NHS rainbow badge
The NHS rainbow badge has been endorsed by the North East Ambulance Service to show its continued support and commitment to LGBT+ staff, patients and the public.
The initiative originated at Evelina London Children’s Hospital and community services, part of Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust and the rainbow badge is a way for NHS staff to show their solidarity to LGBT+ staff and patients when accessing healthcare.
The badge itself is intended to be a simple visual symbol identifying its wearer as someone who an LGBT+ person can feel comfortable talking to about issues relating to sexuality or gender identity. It shows that the wearer is there to listen without judgement and signpost to further support if needed.
Research and development advisor and chair of the Proud@NEAS staff network group said, “NEAS has a clear commitment towards LGBT+ staff, patients and the public.
"This has been shown by us being ranked in previous years on the Stonewall Top 100 employer index and winning various awards for the equality, diversity and inclusion work that we do. We are also a member of the National Ambulance LGBT network and we already wear the rainbow and trans star of life badges.
"We are always looking at ways to strengthen and broaden our support to the LGBT+ community which is why we are launching the NHS rainbow badge at NEAS. This will be worn alongside the rainbow and trans star of life badges. We have also created the NHS rainbow patch so that our operational members of staff can wear these on their uniform in line with our infection control policies.
"The Proud@NEAS network are extremely proud to launch the NHS rainbow badge. We continue to strive for LGBT+ equality and inclusion with the work that we do and we hope that by wearing the badge, we are showing our staff and patients that we are inclusive and care for everyone equally, whilst understanding that people from all demographics have very different needs and experience different issues, prejudice and discrimination.”