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Dillon, Lucy (2020) National LGBTI+ Inclusion Strategy. Drugnet Ireland, Issue 73, Spring 2020, 6 p..

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In November 2019, the Department of Justice and Equality published the National LGBTI+ Inclusion Strategy 2019–2021.1 As with the National LGBTI+ Youth Strategy 2018–2020,2 the new strategy aims to provide a strategic framework for ‘identifying and addressing issues which may prevent LGBTI+ people from enjoying full equality in practice in Irish society’ (p. 3).1 The strategy provides a structure in which:

LGBTI+ groups can identify issues that persist in creating an environment of inequality.

Government, public agencies, business groups, employer and employee representatives, and civil society can work together to resolve these issues.

It is structured around four thematic pillars, under each of which are a set of outcomes to be achieved and a set of associated actions.

Vision and mission

Vision: A safe, fair and inclusive Ireland where people are supported to flourish and to live inclusive, healthy, and fulfilling lives, whatever their sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or sex characteristics.

Mission: To promote inclusion, protect rights, and to improve quality of life and wellbeing for LGBTI+ people enabling them to participate fully in Ireland’s social, economic, cultural, and political life.

Thematic pillars

The four thematic pillars are based on stakeholder consultation about what issues LGBTI+ people in Ireland were facing.

Visible and included: This pillar focuses on the need for increased visibility and non-stereotypical representation of LGBTI+ identities, which would support long-term attitudinal change. Among the eight outcomes identified under this pillar were: LGBTI+ people are positively visible across all sectors of society; Irish workplaces are inclusive of LGBTI+ people and support them in bringing their ‘authentic selves’ to work; and better information is available on the population and needs of LGBTI+ people in Ireland to support the development of effective policy.

Treated equally: This pillar has at its core legislative change and awareness raising to ensure that LGBTI+ people are treated equally. Among the five outcomes to be achieved are: LGBTI+ people are aware of the supports and redress mechanisms available to them where discrimination has occurred; same-sex parents are treated equally to opposite-sex parents before the law; supports are provided to those at higher risk of multiple discrimination and marginalisation, including older people, migrants, Travellers, people with disabilities, and prisoners among the LGBTI+ community.

Healthy: The strategy commits to ensuring that LGBTI+ people can fully and equally avail of mainstream health services, while also recognising the need for dedicated services in some circumstances. Among the seven outcomes to be achieved are: healthcare providers and practitioners are trained to understand the identities and needs of their LGBTI+ patients and to avoid making heteronormative assumptions; and people living with HIV in Ireland are supported and not stigmatised. The action in Reducing harm, supporting recovery: a health-led response to drug and alcohol use 2017–20253 aimed at addressing the needs of LGBTI+ people is cited as an action under the following outcome: health policy takes consideration of the needs of all population groups, including the LGBTI+ community.

Safe and supported: The strategy intends to ensure that LGBTI+ people feel safe and secure when living their daily lives. Among the six outcomes linked to this pillar are: Ireland has strong legislation and supports in place to combat hate crime and encourages people to report it; LGBTI+ victims of crime are appropriately supported and included in mainstream service provision underpinned by formalised consultation structures with An Garda Síochána and other relevant agencies; and LGBTI+ people can travel safely and with confidence.

A mid-term report on progress made on implementing the strategy will take place in Q3 of 2020.

1 Department of Justice and Equality (2019) National LGBTI+ Inclusion Strategy 2019–2021. Dublin: Government of Ireland. https://www.drugsandalcohol.ie/31368/

2 Department of Children and Youth Affairs (2018) LGBTI+ National Youth Strategy 2018–2020. Dublin: Department of Children and Youth Affairs. https://www.drugsandalcohol.ie/29267/

3 Department of Health (2017) Reducing harm, supporting recovery: a health-led response to drug and alcohol use in Ireland 2017–2025. Dublin: Department of Health. https://www.drugsandalcohol.ie/27603/

Item Type
Publication Type
Irish-related, Article
Drug Type
All substances
Intervention Type
Harm reduction
Issue Title
Issue 73, Spring 2020
May 2020
Page Range
6 p.
Health Research Board
Issue 73, Spring 2020

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