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OUH staff adopt NHS Rainbow Badge initiative

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Oxford University Hospitals staff have joined the national NHS Rainbow Badge movement for NHS staff to wear rainbow badges and lanyards to show that they offer open, non-judgmental and inclusive care for everyone who identifies as LGBT+.

By wearing a rainbow badge or lanyard, our staff are promoting a positive message of inclusion.

LGBT+ stands for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender, the + simply means being inclusive of all identities, regardless of how people define themselves.

Hundreds of staff took a few minutes out of their busy days caring for patients to collect badges and lanyards at events which took place on all four main OUH hospital sites - the John Radcliffe Hospital, Churchill Hospital and Nuffield Orthopaedic Centre (NOC) in Oxford and the Horton General in Banbury - today (Friday 11 October 2019) which is National Coming Out Day.

Jane Nicholson, Interim Chief People Officer at OUH, says: "We aim to provide excellent care for our patients, with compassion and respect, and joining the NHS Rainbow Badge initiative is a great example of our commitment to a culture of openness and inclusion for our patients and staff."

The NHS Rainbow Badge initiative was the brainchild of Dr Michael Farquhar who is a sleep consultant at Evelina London Children's Hospital, who sent a message of support to staff at OUH.

He says: "I am delighted that staff at Oxford University Hospitals will be wearing NHS Rainbow Badges and lanyards to promote a positive message of inclusion and showing that their Trust provides open and non-judgmental care to patients who identify as LGBT+.

"The Rainbow Badges initiative has really captured the imagination of staff across the NHS, allowing a simple symbol to make a big difference. Our OUH colleagues will be joining a national movement to make the NHS a welcoming place for all patients and staff."

OUH's adoption of the NHS Rainbow Badge initiative was made possible thanks to a successful bid by Tommy Snipe (Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Manager) and the Trust's LGBT+ Staff Network, to Oxford Hospitals Charity's Small Grants Fund. The Fund supports staff who have great ideas to improve patient and staff experience.

Hazel Murray, Head of Programme at Oxford Hospitals Charity, says: "Our Small Grants Fund is designed to help take the ideas our hospital staff have for innovations and improvements and turn them into a reality. So we are very pleased to be able to support this new project to make LGBT+ staff and patients feel welcome and included across our hospitals."

Pictured: from left, OUH Genetic Technologist Ryan Novill, Chief People Officer Jane Nicholson, Children's Nurse Alison Pritchard