South Ayrshire Council's Community Learning and Development youth work team has just received a prestigious Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) Silver Charter Mark Award.
The Council has been recognised by LGBT Youth Scotland for its work with and support of South Ayrshire's LGBT community, particularly young people.
LGBT Youth Scotland awarded the Charter Mark to the Council's youth work team for their commitment to best practice across a range of areas. These include membership groups such as the LGBT Champions Group and staff training to highlight transgender awareness and hate crime. The team also delivered a range LGBT workshops and awareness campaigns across South Ayrshire.
LGBT Youth Scotland praised the consultation activities of the youth work team and recognised their effective social media campaigns. The team's awareness raising is helping young people understand LGBT issues:
"I found out a lot about LGBT that I didn't previously know"
"It made me think about other people and how they live their lives"
Councillor Julie Dettbarn, Health and Social Care Portfolio Holder said: "This Charter Mark underlines the Council's positive steps towards challenging discrimination while promoting a more inclusive society. The Charter recognises that even more of our staff are comfortable discussing LGBT issues and identities and challenging inappropriate behaviour.
"The award also highlights our status as an equal opportunities employer. Equality and diversity are at the heart of our organisation and this award promotes the Council as a safe and supportive employer."
Councillor Laura Brennan-Whitefield, Chair of the Equalities Forum said: "The Charter Mark is visible reminder that LGBT people in South Ayrshire are valued and supported. We will continue to work with them and partner organisations to remove barriers to ensure that everyone is treated fairly no matter their background or identity. We still have work to do but this is a massive boost to the CLD team and shows we are moving in the right direction."
Kerry Riddell, Partnerships Manager South for LGBT Youth Scotland, said: "This is a fantastic achievement. South Ayrshire Council Community Learning and Development Youth work services team have demonstrated to staff, service users and external stakeholders that the Council takes LGBT equality seriously. The Council's LGBT Charter journey has been very positive and has instigated many areas of very good practice and comprehensive change as well as positively influencing others. We look forward to continued partnership working to promote LGBT equality".
LGBT Youth Scotland has supported the Council to undertake training, review policies in line with legislation, and consider practices and resources. The Council will continue this productive partnership to ensure even more LGBT people are listened to and supported.
The award was presented by Fergus McMillan, Chief Executive of LGBT Youth Scotland.
For more local information or useful links and further support please visit: https://young.scot/local-authorities/south-ayrshire/lgbt/
To contact CLD to find out more about their LGBT charter please email: CLD@south-ayrshire.gov.uk
To find out more about the South Ayrshire LGBT youth group please email: firstname.lastname@example.org or Text : 07786 202 370