Equality, diversity and inclusion is the responsibility of us all and creating an inclusive environment is only possible if individuals, regardless of their sexual orientation, promote positive respectful behaviour. By having visible LGBT allies we can promote a safe environment for LGBT staff and students to be themselves.
An LGBT ally is anyone who wishes to publically support the LGBT community and is committed to equality and creating an inclusive environment where everyone can be themselves; by pledging your support your will receive a rainbow lanyard.
To sign up as an LGBT+ ally, please email us on LGBTForum@plymouth.ac.uk and tell us why you want to be an ally and what you feel you can contribute.
Welcome to the LGBT+ Staff Forum
The LGBT+ Staff Forum exists to give a voice to all LGBT+ staff at the University of Plymouth. We provide confidential support for all LGBT+ Staff and Allies worried about LGBT+ colleagues. We encourage all staff to celebrate diversity and influence policy via the University’s EDI Committee.
We recognise the significance intersectionality plays in our lives, we therefore welcome all staff who identify as having a minority gender identity and/or sexual orientation irrespective of age, disability, ethnicity, race, nationality, marital/civil partnership status, pregnancy/maternity circumstances, religion or belief.
We especially encourage members of the LGBT+ community who are also part of other underrepresented groups to join our forum where we have a safe space for you to be your authentic self.
We have four levels of membership including joining us as a non-LGBT+ Ally:
- Active – Happy to be a public face of the LGBT+ Staff Forum
- Inclusive – Invited to meetings but only other members can contact you
- Private – Supporting the forum but do not want your membership to be known
- Ally – You do not identify as LGBT+ but want to be an ally and support the Forum
Membership is confidential by default and you should be given protected time in your workload to engage with staff networks. All staff (including UPSU, UCSP staff and PhD students) can join a staff network. Members receive a pin badge when they join and allies receive a rainbow lanyard and are invited to a training course.
To support the development of an LGBT+ friendly culture at the University of Plymouth.
To offer confidential support and guidance to all LGBT+ staff at the University.
To create visibility for the LGBT+ staff community at the University of Plymouth, including acting as an information/welcome point for new LGBT+ staff and all new colleagues.
To provide an opportunity for LGBT+ staff to network both inside and outside the University and to offer possibilities for social and professional peer support and mentoring for all staff.
To advise and give feedback on University policy development and associated practice.
We love to share our exciting news and developments on how we are supporting staff and students at the University, as well as our work in the local community.
For the very latest news, follow us on Twitter @PULGBTForum
Support and training
LGBT+ Allies training
What does it mean to be an LGBT+ Ally? How can you actually make a difference? This course is here to help! Being an LGBT+ Ally isn't just about wearing a rainbow lanyard and going to Pride each year; it is about offering real, tangible support to the LGBT+ community. This course will provide delegates with the skills to tackle homophobia, biphobia and transphobia in the workplace in an interactive and fun session with members of the LGBT+ Staff Forum.
LGBT+ breathing spaces
Research carried out by the charity, Stonewall, found that members of the LGBT+ community have a higher than average prevalence of mental ill health, which can be attributed to a range of factors such as discrimination, isolation and homophobia, transphobia and biphobia.
The University of Plymouth LGBT+ Staff Forum has launched a network of breathing spaces across campus to allow any LGBT+ person to go somewhere quiet to pause, relax and decide what to do next.
The University of Plymouth supports our trans and non-binary staff and students in using the toilets they feel most comfortable in. You have every right to feel safe in the toilet you choose.
If you would prefer to use a gender-neutral toilet then use this map to find your closest one. Bullying, harassment and discrimination is never tolerated; if you experience any problems or have any concerns then contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
University of Plymouth staff have access to a wide range of internal courses and training programmes and the courses listed here may be of particular interest to LGBT+ Staff Forum Members and LGBT+ Allies:
Leadership and management
- Aurora Women's Leadership Development
- Management Essentials: Mental Health Awareness
- Management Essentials: Understanding Privilege and Bias
Equality, diversity and inclusion
LGBT+ Senior Ally, Professor Sube Banerjee
The LGBT+ Staff Forum are very proud to introduce Professor Sube Banerjee MBE, the Executive Dean of the Faculty of Health as one of our new senior champions.
"I am delighted to be one of the University’s LGBT+ senior champions. We aim as an organisation to be the very best we can be, and we can only succeed in this if we are a truly inclusive workplace where people from all backgrounds feel welcomed and valued. It is a real privilege to play a part in creating a supportive environment for all who work at our University."
LGBT+ Senior Ally, Alice Ludgate, Head of Student Services
"I love to celebrate all things diverse, it’s what makes the world such a vibrant and interesting place. But I know that inclusion is not always the norm, far from it, and I’m not happy to settle for there still being workplaces and communities where people aren’t accepted for who they are. No longer can I tolerate employees feeling they cannot truly relax at work and be themselves, no longer should LGBT+ staff have to tolerate abuse and discrimination, no longer should we have underrepresentation of LGBT+ employees in senior roles. I see the University of Plymouth as playing a pivotal role in both improving our own practice as well as being a role model for the region and sector and I am proud to be in the position of LGBT Senior Champion to help carry on the excellent work already underway."
Mr Jonathan Coe
Senior Technician (Marine Science)
LGBT+ Staff Forum Co-chair
Ms Beth Hallissey
Senior Technician - SDLE
LGBT+ Staff Forum Co-chair
Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Manager
LGBT+ Staff Forum Treasurer
Miss Lowri Jones
Senior Administrator - Complaints and Appeals Office
LGBT+ Staff Forum Training Co-ordinator
Miss Jess Darling
Staff Networks and Outreach Administrator
LGBT+ Staff Forum Secretary & Bisexual Rep