Working with LGBTQI+ Disabled People: top tips for personal assistants and support workers

At a glance 71
Published: October 2017

Key messages

Introduction

This briefing provides information for personal assistants (PAs), support workers, social workers and other social care staff working with LGBTQI+ Disabled People.

It is based on research in England carried out by a partnership of the University of Bristol, Regard (the national LGBTQI+ Disabled People’s organisation), the Social Care Institute for Excellence (SCIE) and Stonewall. The research was funded by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) School for Social Care Research.

If you listen to their needs and respect their needs, then it’s a great job to have. It’s a very rewarding job.

Personal assistant

The quotations used in this document are from people who took part in the research. This briefing is accompanied by a briefing for LGBTQI+ Disabled People and two films, one for PAs and support workers and one for LGBTQI+ Disabled People.

LGBTQI+ means

People who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, queer, questioning, intersex or who hold identities such as non-binary. LGBTQI+ Disabled People may have physical or sensory impairments, learning difficulties, longterm health conditions and/or mental health difficulties, and come from all age groups, religions and cultural backgrounds. Our identities reflect the challenges and discrimination that we face because of our gender, religion, age and cultural backgrounds, in addition to gender and sexual orientation. Disabled People are as likely to be lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, queer, questioning, intersex or non-binary as non-disabled people.

What is Self-Directed Support?

Employing PAs anyway is a brilliant thing. The fact that we can do that now, ... it’s so important, such a good thing.

LGBTQI+ disabled person

The rights of LGBTQI+ Disabled People

Working with LGBTQI+ Disabled People

When she (my employer) knew it was OK for me to know, she just told me. It’s been great since then because she feels completely comfortable with me.’

Personal assistant

If you are supporting someone, their sexuality will matter a lot... It’s not just feed someone or help them get into bed. Emotionally we’re there to support them.

Personal assistant

Being able to access things and meet up with people, it’s opened up more than one aspect of my world and that has been fantastic. That freedom means more to me than I can possibly say, to be honest.

LGBTQI+ disabled person

I don’t think you necessarily get it right all the time, but I think that doesn’t matter; it’s about learning from that as well.

LGBTQI+ disabled person

Resources / further reading

Organisations

Stonewall

Britain’s leading LGBT charity which campaigns for lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans equality in Britain and abroad.

Contact: Website or Email

Information Line 08000 50 20 20 open Monday to Friday, 9.30 – 5.30pm

Regard

National LGBTQI+ Disabled People’s organisation; associate membership for allies and organisations is also available.

Contact: Website or Email
BM Regard, London WC1N 3XX

Equality and Human Rights Commission

Independent statutory body with responsibility to encourage equality and diversity, eliminate unlawful discrimination, and protect and promote the human rights of everyone in Britain.

Contact: Website

Equality Advisory and Support Service (EASS)

Offers expert information, advice and support on discrimination and human rights issues and the law.

Contact: Website
FREEPOST EASS HELPLINE, FPN6521.
Tel: 0808 800 0082
Textphone: 0808 800 0084

Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS)

Helps employers make safer recruitment decisions and prevent unsuitable people from working with vulnerable groups, including checking people’s criminal records.

Contact: Website or Email
DBS helpline: 03000 200 190
Minicom: 03000 200 192

About this briefing

This briefing was based on research in England carried out by a partnership of the University of Bristol, Regard (the national LGBTQI+ Disabled People’s organisation) , the Social Care Institute for Excellence (SCIE) and Stonewall.

Funding logo of National Institute for Health Research School for Social Care Research (NIHR SSCR) This briefing presents independent research funded by the National Institute for Health Research School for Social Care Research (NIHR SSCR).

The views expressed are not necessarily those of NIHR SSCR, the Department of Health, or the NHS.