#SpeakingUpSpeaksVolumes

Every time you speak up or support someone who is LGBTIQ+, you will make a difference to a life now and in the future. Here’s how to get involved.

Get involved in this campaign

Use the hashtag

Share positive stories about how speaking up has made a difference using #SpeakingUpSpeaksVolumes

 

Share some works of support

Leave a comment and share your support for this campaign.

 

Show your support and become an ally

It’s easy to become an ally for LGBTIQ+ people. If you make a choice to be vocal and actively inclusive, you’re already halfway to making a difference to people’s lives.

 

Get informed

  • Give yourself a check-up. What you do and say could cause unintended harm. Find out when and how to use the correct pronouns.
  • Get free inclusion or suicide prevention training.
  • Enquire with your local community groups, health services, organisations or committees to see what they do, and share our resources to help them become more inclusive.

Stand up for what is right

Focus on making physical and psychologically safe spaces.

Your support is a barrier to bullying, negative remarks or abuse. Head here for more guidance on how to speak up when you see something that’s not right or someone who needs your support.

Listen with empathy

If you are open to listening, with compassion and without judgement, that might be everything to someone. It could be all the support they need at that time. Listen to what is happening with your friends, colleagues and teammates so you can support them.

Events and dates to remember

Show your support for LGBTIQ+ people by joining events such as Wear it Purple day or  IDAHOBIT day.

Put these dates in your calendar and show your support for LGBTIQ+ communities by joining in the events:

Learn something new

Discrimination comes in many forms

Here are some examples of discrimination commonly faced by LGBTIQ+ people:

  • Dead-naming (deliberately using an incorrect name for someone)
  • Misgendering (using incorrect pronouns. E.g. referring to someone who identifies as a woman and uses ‘she/her’ pronouns as ‘he’)
  • Invasive questioning about someone’s physical characteristics or sex life
  • Harassment or bullying, including ridiculing or ignoring someone, because of their sexuality or gender identity
  • Denying training, promotion, participation or access to someone at work, sport or elsewhere because of their sexuality or gender identity
  • Changing someone’s job, club or other role – such as taking them off customer service – because of their sexuality or gender identity
  • Lack of access to toilets, change rooms and other facilities
  • Using gendered uniforms and competitions

(Info source: Proud2Play LGBTIQ+ Inclusion Guidelines Template)

The LGBTIQ+ are all different

  • LGBTIQ, which stands for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and gender diverse, Intersex and Queer (or some also use the Q for Questioning), is an abbreviation to encompass a range of diverse sexualities, genders and sex characteristics.
  • The + recognises that people might fit more than one of these terms or use other terms to describe themselves. Heterosexual and cis-gender people can be part of LGBTIQ+ communities. For example, there are straight trans and intersex people.
  • When writing about LGBTIQ+ people, it is best to use the term ‘communities’, as there are many separate and distinct communities within the umbrella term.
  • While LGBTIQ+ communities often work together – for example to advocate for equal rights – they are individual communities with their own experiences, needs and priorities.

Intersex

Intersex people are born with physical or biological sex characteristics (such as sexual anatomy, reproductive organs, hormonal patterns and/or chromosomal patterns) that are more diverse than stereotypical definitions for male or female bodies. For some people, these traits are apparent prenatally or at birth, while for others they emerge later in life, often at puberty.

Intersex Human Rights Australia (IHRA) recognises the diverse histories, uses the word Intersex inclusively and acknowledges the right to self-determination.

This is also useful, including the Intersex for allies by Human Rights Australia.

Inclusive language

Inclusive language is a powerful tool to show support for LGBTIQ+ people. It’s all about preventing the assumptions people make about someone’s sex, sexuality or gender identity. With inclusive language, people are not left feeling unseen, isolated or disrespected.

Here are some examples of adjusting language to be more inclusive:

  • Person first – use the name someone introduces themselves as
  • Avoid gendered terms like ‘husband’ and ‘girlfriend’ (use words like ‘partner’ instead)
  • Avoid gendered terms such as ‘mum and dad’ (use ‘parents or guardians’)
  • Take notice of the pronouns people use for themselves (he, she, they)
  • If you’re unsure of the pronoun, stick with the person’s name or politely ask which pronoun they use (not which one they prefer, as sexuality and gender identity are not choices)

And if you make a mistake, apologise and then continue the conversation. Being inclusive is not about getting it right all the time, as long as we’re trying.

(Info source: Proud2Play LGBTIQ+ Inclusion Guidelines Template)

For more on inclusive language, the Victorian Government’s inclusive language guide is a good practical guide for all types of inclusive communication. It’s designed for people who work in the public service, but it’s useful for anyone wanting to help build a more inclusive society.

Intersectionality and LGBTIQ+ communities

We all have multiple social, political, racial or religious identities. We call this intersectionality – where gender, race, religion, appearance, disability, etc. intersect to create our own unique story. The structures, relationships and dynamics of systems in society can affect our story too – to marginalise or to create privilege.  Find out more about intersectionality here.

Transgender

A transgender person is someone whose gender does not exclusively align with the one they were assigned at birth.

Transgender people are at very high risk of poor mental health, self-harming and suicide attempts. The Trans Pathway report found that around 3 in every 4 trans young people have experienced anxiety or depression. Four out of 5 trans young people have engaged in self-harm, and almost 1 in 2 have attempted suicide (48%).

Transgender Victoria has a range of resources for transpeople, their family members and friends.

The Zoe Belle Gender Collective champions the rights of Trans and Gender Diverse Communities.

Take part in training

Professional training

If you work in health care, there are many training programs and services to help you and your organisation support LGBTIQ+ people.

There are some available through our LGBTIQ Suicide Prevention Trial. You might also want to consider the following:

Free suicide prevention training

There are two free suicide prevention training programs online, available to anyone:

LivingWorks Australia has also co-designed LGBTIQ+ suicide prevention and intervention training through the ASIST and safeTALK programs. These are provided by Switchboard and Thorne Harbour Health.

Schools, workplaces and sporting clubs

  • Minus18 runs training programs for inclusive classrooms and workplaces
  • Visit the Victorian Government’s website on creating an inclusive workplace, which outlines the LGBTIQ+ strategy, inclusive and workforce inclusion plans
  • Proud2Play runs inclusion education for sporting clubs and schools, in group or online sessions
  • Get your sporting club updated with Proud2Play resources

Keep safe online

Orygen’s #chatsafe provides tools and tips for young people to communicate safely online about suicide.

Family support

Queerspace provides education for rainbow families, and a number of youth and support resources for primary and secondary students.