Saturday, January 22, 2011

Summing up 2010

It’s probably a mixed blessing to say that this year has been another year of new experiences. Some of those experiences have been real learning experiences but when I back look at the outcomes, 2010 has been a year of amazing of progress.

In June 2010 GenderShift managed to secure over £250,000 in funding from the Department of Health to create the UK’s first single point of access centre for Gender Variant people. We opened in September and have been overwhelmed by the response from people of all ages struggling with their gender identity and sexual orientation. We have also see a huge increase in friends, family and employers seeking help. Our challenge now is to fund the running of the centre because our training revenues and access to general funding have been severely impacted by swinging public sector cuts.

This year has seen further sweeping changes in UK Equalities Law with the introduction of the Equality Act 2010 and brings new protections around Associated and Perceived discrimination while equalising the treatment of all people with “protected characteristics”. In response to this, and in preparation for the introduction of the Public Sector Equality Duty in April 2011, GenderShift has enhanced it's range of training seminars, workshops and presentations.

With so much pressure on the bottom line it is very tempting for organisations to apply cuts to soft targets like training, and equality and diversity training has definitely suffered. Unfortunately it is at times like these that people with protected characteristics are most vulnerable and it is really important for all socially responsible organisations to make sure that changes are fair to all staff, customers and service users.

That will be the theme of my Keynote Presentation, Seminars, Workshops and Consultation services. If you would like to discuss how GenderShift can help you, especially in relation to Sex, Gender and the Equality Act – don’t hesitate to contact me.