Marie Curie has signed up to be a Stonewall Diversity Champion, building on the charity’s existing work to promote LGTBQ+ diversity and inclusion amongst its staff and volunteers, as well as the patients and families it supports in hospices and communities across the UK.
Stonewall, Europe’s leading charity for lesbian, gay, bi and trans equality, works with more than 750 organisations to help them create workplaces that are inclusive and welcoming of LGBT people.
As a Diversity Champion, Marie Curie will receive expert consultation and advice from Stonewall. Together they will review current policies and practices, and staff training and Stonewall staff will engage with senior leaders, and help support the charity’s growing LGBTQ+ network across the UK to ensure that staff and volunteers can feel safe and be themselves.
The charity has also set up a working group to ensure people from LGBTQ+ communities receive the best possible care and support from Marie Curie; and to make sure they feel safe to be who they are when using the charity’s nursing, hospice and patient-facing volunteer-led services, as well as to show that Marie Curie is a charity that values and welcomes diversity.
Matthew Reed, Chief Executive of Marie Curie, said: “Our Hiding Who I Am report showed that many from LGBTQ+ communities can avoid palliative care, or hide their sexuality when using palliative care services because they think they will be discriminated against.
“We are determined to ensure that our services are welcoming and supportive to the LGBTQ+ community – that is just the right thing to do. Our own staff and volunteers also deserve to work in a place where they feel they can be who they are and bring the best of themselves to work every day.
“Our partnership with Stonewall is something that is incredibly important to me and other members of the executive leadership team and I am delighted that we are taking this work forward. Everyone should feel safe, happy and proud to be part of the Marie Curie family, wherever they are in the UK.”
Jo Estrin from Stonewall said: “We’re delighted Marie Curie has joined our Diversity Champions programme. We’ll be supporting them to embed LGBT inclusion throughout the organisation and create a more accepting workplace.
“We know that people perform better at work when they can be themselves and that diverse teams lead to more creative and productive environments.”