Our vision is for all carers to be valued, respected and supported regardless of age, ability, ethnicity, race, culture, religious or political belief, socioeconomic status, sexuality and gender identity. We identify and break down barries to inclusion and are committed to providing services that are respectful and inclusive for all carers.
Our internal Equity and Inclusion Committee meets regularly to ensure our Equity and Inclusion workplan is carried out, and all staff receive appropriate training in working with diverse communities. Our aim is to ensure Carers Victoria is inclusive for staff, carers and stakeholders.
Reconciliation Action Plan
In May 2021, Carers Victoria launched our first Reconciliation Action Plan: Reflect.
Carers Victoria acknowledges that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples are more likely to have a caring role than non-Aboriginal Victorians. We are committed to reconciliation, supporting and working with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities through our core business.
While we have worked with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities and businesses over many years, our Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) is our first coordinated, whole-of-organisation approach to reconciliation. It shows our commitment to concrete, measurable actions.
Rainbow Tick Accredited
Carers Victoria is proud to be a Rainbow Tick accredited organisation.
This national accreditation demonstrates our commitment to safe and inclusive practices for LGBTI consumers and staff. LGBTIQA+ people come from a range of backgrounds, faiths, occupations, locations, cultural and linguistic backgrounds, and family types. Under the rainbow umbrella there are many LGBTIQA+ communities and groups who identify as Queer/Questioning, Pansexual, Asexual, Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender Diverse, Intersex and other identities.
Carers Victoria seeks to provide support specific to individual carer needs and acknowledges that although people in LGBTIQA+ care relationships face many of the same joys and pressures as any other carer, the LGBTIQA+ community has unique needs. LGBTIQA+ people may experience specific challenges related to invisibility, discrimination and exclusion. A lack of recognition of a person's experience, sexuality, gender identity or care relationship can add stress to carers in already challenging circumstances.
Many LGBTIQA+ carers may be isolated from others in their communities by distance, social isolation, financial disadvantage, stigma and/or demands related to their role. At Carers Victoria, our aim is to provide inclusive and affirming services which value, celebrate and support LGBTIQA+ carers and carers of LGBTIQA+ people.
Our Commitment – Rainbow Tick Accreditation
Carers Victoria is proud to have achieved Rainbow Tick accreditation in June 2020 after years of championing LGBTIQA+ inclusion. To find out more about the accreditation visit the website here.
Our organisational commitment to inclusion includes:
- An organisational commitment to ongoing LGBTIQA+ inclusive and culturally safe services through the Rainbow Tick program, which has support from the highest level of management and is now incorporated into strategic imperatives;
- Information sheets for people working with LGBTIQA+ carers;
- Diversity Committee including a LGBTIQA+ sub group;
- A staff Pride Network, through which we strive to be an employer of choice for the LGBTIQA+ community.
- After campaigning to all parties on behalf of carers interests in the lead up to the 2017 Victorian election, the Andrews Government committed to $4 million for carer support groups, focused on carers in regional areas, and under-recognised groups such as young carers and LGBTIQA+ carers
- Ongoing work with LGBTIQA+ organisations to represent carers needs, such as Val’s Cafe, Switchboard, Living Positive Victoria, Minus 18, National LGBTIQA+ Health Alliance. Our main collaborations have been:
- Creating an eLearning module on young LGBTIQA+ carers for organisations to use
- Creating a Carers Handbook with Living Positive Victoria with information and resources for older people living with HIV (PLHIV) and their care team (including carers, care workers, health professionals, and family and friends)
- Present at conferences on LGBTIQA+ carers interests and needs
- Representing LGBTIQA+ carers interests at government forums such as the National Ageing and Aged Care Roundtable which was convened to review the progress of the National LGBTIQA+ Ageing and Aged Care Strategy.
- Participation in the National LGBTI Carers Network
Engagement in broader community work
- Our broader community work includes sponsoring Melbourne Queer Film Festival films, supporting Pride March and Carnival as part of Midsumma Festival, celebrating International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia and supporting the ‘yes’ vote during the marriage equality survey
Carers Victoria conducted consultations with carers who identify as members of the LGBTIQA+ communities or care for someone who does. The major themes that arose from these consultations include resilience, experiences of discrimination and isolation. A number of suggestions for providing inclusive services for carers were also made. Read the summary here.
We partner with external institutions to conduct research focusing on LGBTIQA+ carers to inform industry and aid in advocacy. Some of our reports include:
- Carers of LGBTIQA+ people with mental illness (2017)
- An Extra Degree of Difficulty: Older LGBTI carers (2015)
Special Edition Videocast with Gender and Sexuality Commissioner Ro Allen
To celebrate our Rainbow Tick accreditation, Carers Victoria held a special edition Conversations with Carers Victoria videocast on 13 August 2020 with Gender and Sexuality Commissioner, Ro Allen.
Watch the videocast here.