ACON establishes new Trans and Gender Diverse Health Advisory Group

ACON TGDNSW’s leading LGBTI health organisation, ACON, has announced the creation of a Trans and Gender Diverse (TGD) advisory group to advise on the development of it’s first Trans and Gender Diverse Community Health Strategy.

The Trans and Gender Diverse Community Health Strategy Advisory Group will provide strategic advice on specific health issues relating to the TGD community, with the goal to support broader health system reform and to inform what actions are required to comprehensively address, and strengthen, TGD inclusion in ACON’s overall LGBTI community health response.

ACON President Dr Justin Koonin said that knowing how to better address TGD community health and wellbeing issues was fundamental for ACON to continue delivering services that are inclusive of everyone within LGBTI communities.

“As LGBTI health responses evolve, it has become clear that there are significant barriers to TGD inclusion in many aspects of health service provision, and unless we address these barriers carefully and pragmatically, we will see increasing disparity,” said Dr Koonin.

“All members of our communities should be benefiting from gains we are making in other areas of LGBTI health. The establishment of this advisory group will play a significant role in helping ACON achieve meaningful, and equal, health outcomes, as well as delivering a tool to assist community advocates, policy makers and ACON to improve the health and rights of TGD communities in NSW.”

The advisory group will comprise of members of the TGD community, community organisations and groups, researchers and some key ACON staff. TGD community representation on the advisory group will be sought through an Expression of Interest process, with the goal of achieving a diverse representation of ethnicities, backgrounds and cultural experiences.

TGD community members who are not representatives of professional organisations will be paid a sitting fee to attend meetings and consultation processes. Sistergirls, Brotherboys, binary identified men and women, along with non-binary identified people such as genderqueer, trans-masculine, trans feminine, gender-fluid, agender people etc. are all encouraged to apply.

ACON Board Director Atari Metcalf stressed the importance of members of the TGD community being involved in the development process of ACON’s forthcoming strategy. “Critical to improving our approach to TGD health promotion and intervention is engaging, consulting and resourcing peer-led and peer-driven responses,” said Mr Metcalf.

“Members of TGD communities must be included in the development of any strategy aimed at addressing issues pertinent to them. The advisory group will assist us in setting out the priorities and health programs needed to support the care, wellbeing and inclusion of TGD people.

“As we mark this year’s Transgender Day of Visibility, ACON is proud to work with our communities in improving the health and wellbeing of TGD people. By working together, we can meet the overall health outcomes of TGD people by addressing health inequalities that many continue to face,” added Mr Metcalf.

For more information and to submit an Expressions of Interest for the Trans and Gender Diverse Community Health Strategy Advisory Group, visit: www.aconhealth.org.au for details.

Image: courtesy of ACON

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