NHS Lothian marks Trans Day of Visibility 01/04/2022 16:06

31st March was Trans Day of Visibility and NHS Lothian issued this release, which features our very own Rob Kerr. It would be great if we at ELHSCP were able to make our own contribution next year. If you have ideas, please get in touch. Jane at jogden-smith@eastlothian.gov.uk

Promoting NHS Lothian’s diversity and inclusion, not just in how we meet and care for our patients, but also in how we meet and care for each other, is fundamental to our values.

Calum Campbell, Chief Executive for NHS Lothian, said: “As an employer and healthcare provider we state without reservation that all staff and patients must be treated equally irrespective of their gender, sexuality, skin colour, culture or religion. We support diversity of all kinds and the fundamental need for equality and inclusion is at the heart of what we stand for. It’s important that we as staff and representatives of NHS Lothian, stand against any form of intolerance – we must treat one another with care, compassion, dignity, and respect. These are a key part of our organisation’s values.”

International Trans Day of Visibility is an event observed all over the globe to increase awareness of gender diversity, the existence of transgender people, and the discrimination they face in many aspects of society. NHS Lothian worked with the NHS Lothian LGBT+ Staff Network to share the stories of four trans colleagues, and you can read their stories below. You can also retweet and share them on Twitter: Maxwell’s storyRobin’s storyRob’s story, and Kai’s story.

Maxwell says:

“My name is Maxwell Reay, and I have worked as a chaplain in the NHS Lothian Spiritual Care Team for 15 years. I am a gay trans man. Being transgender is a central part of my identity and my gender journey has shaped who I am today. I was born female and I identify and live as male.

Every now and again I find myself coming out to someone at work who is unaware of my story.

I do this because I am proud that I can fully embrace my identity at work.

I do this because LGBTQI+ visibility is important.

I do this because coming out saves lives.

I do this because I trust that the values of NHS Lothian apply to all staff and patients.

Robin says:

“My name is Robin Kepple, and I have been with NHS Lothian for just over a year. I have identified as transgender for over ten years, but I’ve used a variety of labels within that category.

Whether you are cisgender or transgender, your gender is a journey. Let yourself find what you are most comfortable with – it’s okay if that changes, too. Being sure of who you are is the most empowering thing you can do, and it’s one of the most inspirational things you can show others.

Rob says:

“My name is Rob Kerr, and I have been working as a Personal Assistant at East Lothian Health & Social Care Partnership since 2019, having previously worked at NHS Highland for 12 years and in the medical publishing industry prior to that.

As someone who came out as non-binary/gender fluid in my early 50s, I am keen to raise awareness among people of my generation about what it means to be non-binary. I don’t mind what pronouns people use for me but prefer to be addressed as Mx, although I often have to explain what that means.

Coming out has given me so much confidence to be my true self at last, especially at work.”

Kai says:

“My name is Kai Millar, and I am a spiritual caregiver (Chaplain). I work throughout the hospital responding to referrals made by nursing staff on behalf of the patient or family when the are struggling with receiving ‘bad news’ have low mood or coming to the end of their life.

I love to work with people, hear their life story, help them to identify the things that are most important to them in their lives and work towards fulfilling them. I am passionate about people and hearing and responding to the needs of the people. I am a person who works for Justice for all people. In this I promote the health and well-being of all.”