Health workers attending to counter normative sexual orientations and gender identities

In 2010, Triangle Project worked with Marion Stevens to develop training material for health workers to address poor attitudes, lack of defined services and lack of understanding of LGBTI needs and of requirements within the health system. Triangle Project was funded by Charles Schorer for this work in 2010. Having been part of the Women’s Health Project which developed Health Workers for Change in the 1990s , Marion requested permission from Professor Sharon Fonn to adapt this methodology which has been widely used and researched globally.

Some years later Triangle Project found itself needing to refer clients for sexual and reproductive health services. In particular issues of screening for cervical cancer and abortion services surfaced as neglected services. An informal referral network was developed as the Sexual and Reproductive Justice Coalition (SRJC) was being formed. This involved collaboration with Sister Judiac Ranape a Reproductive Health Manager and Trainer in the public service.

In October of 2018, the SRJC held a workshop in collaboration with Triangle where participants reflected on their health needs in conversation with health providers noting challenges and barriers that queer persons experience. This translated in closer collaboration and members of Triangle participated in the Abortion Provider Appreciation Days in 2019 and 2020 articulating their gratitude to sensitive health workers who have provided care.

Overtime language has evolved as has clinical practice and knowledge; we appreciate that these changes will continue as we refine and improve health care and systems to be responsive to the needs of persons with counter normative sexualities and gender identities. This manual is now being published for wider use to enable improved care within the health system for persons of counter normative sexualities and gender identities.

Aluta continua
Marion Stevens and Sharon Cox

October 22, 2020