Support for Members Undergoing Gender Reassignment

Back to all Motions

2006 National LGBT Conference
21 September 2006

Conference welcomes the initial work undertaken by the Department of Health’s Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Advisory Group (SOGIAG) and the Scottish INCLUSION Project on the issue of gender identity in the NHS.

Conference welcomes the increased profile of issues of concern facing transgendered communities but notes that trans people still face considerable hurdles in accessing healthcare and that the NHS is still not sufficiently advanced in recognising the needs of trans employees in undergoing gender reassignment.

Conference acknowledges the need for training and education in the healthcare setting to support the provision of services that are inclusive for service users undergoing or preparing for gender reassignment as well as adequate guidelines to ensure equality in employment.

Conference welcomes the guidance on employment issues around gender identity produced by UNISON. Issues that are covered include:

1.The need to ensure confidentiality for the staff member concerned;

2.The need to support the member of staff undergoing gender reassignment in terms of making arrangements for their life experience as well as recognising legitimate need for time off work for medical appointments;

3.The need to recognise the member of staff in their acquired gender;

4.The need for members of staff to be protected from harassment on the grounds of their gender identity (including from service users);

5.Recognition that all transgendered staff may not wish to undergo gender reassignment or apply for a Gender Recognition Certificate.

Conference further welcomes the practice guidelines produced Press for Change. Conference calls on the Service Group Executive to work in conjunction with UNISON’s LGBT Committee and organisations such as Press for Change to:

A.Disseminate and promote these guidelines as widely as possible as a means to promote best practice by raising awareness of issues faced by transgendered people in the NHS;

B.Support the work of the Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Advisory Group (SOGIAG) in promoting wider awareness of trans issues within the NHS;

C.Seek to develop guidelines, in conjunction with employers, regarding staff undergoing gender reassignment;

D.Encourage branches to raise the issues of gender identity, gender reassignment and Gender Recognition with employers at a local level to ensure that the required policies are in place;

E.Seek to develop work on professional guidelines promoting awareness of the issues of gender identity amongst health professionals.