What is Pride?
Pride Glasgow is Scotland’s largest festival of Lesbian, Gay, Bi-sexual, Transgender and Intersex (LGBTI) celebration, returning in 2017 for a two day festival weekend at Glasgow Green.
The Festival takes place on August 19th and 20th with the site opening from 12pm on the Saturday and 1pm on the Sunday. This year the theme is the importance of LGBTI families, whether biological or for those who have created wonderful families made up of friends and other loved ones.
Though the emphasis is on fun, there’s a serious side that needs to be remembered. LGBTI people still experience extremes of persecution and discrimination, both home and away. In 2017, there are still countries where being in a same sex relationship is considered a serious crime and could be punishable by death. Where you might consider areas to have more inclusive attitudes, LGBTI people still find themselves at risk of violence and exclusion. Against this backdrop, Pride offers an opportunity for LGBTI people and straight allies to join together in a place of safety to celebrate achievements and campaign for further equality.
What’s it got to do with the NHS?
It’s important the NHS is visible at Pride. Stonewall’s ‘Unhealthy Attitudes’ report (2015) suggests the NHS still has some way to go before it can claim to be truly inclusive of LGBTI people. The report (of a survey of more than 3000 health and social care staff across the UK) showed 24% of staff had heard colleagues make negative comments about LGB people and a quarter had heard similar remarks made about transgender people. 10% of staff had heard colleagues suggest that lesbian, gay and bi-sexual people could be ‘cured’ of their sexual orientations. Perhaps it’s no surprise that a 2012 survey of gay men found a third were still not ’out’ to health and social care professionals, potentially missing out on key services available to them.
NHSGGC will be celebrating its 5th consecutive year at Pride Glasgow and will be taking time to chat to festival goers about the diverse range of services we deliver and capturing people’s experiences of using them. NHSGGC’s Steve Retson Project will be on site to promote their specialist sexual health service for gay, bi-sexual and men who have sex with men. For the third year this will include free and confidential HIV testing from a specialist unit on site. Sandyford sexual health services will also be on site to promote its services to young people in particular and the Equality and Human Rights Team will be asking about people’s experiences in NHS services and finding out if there's anything we could do to improve people's experiences in NHS services.
Come see us
If you’re heading to Glasgow Green that weekend we’d love to see you at the NHSGGC stall and can promise you a warm welcome!