Trust hosts first national LGBT conference ahead of another strong turnout at Pride
South East Coast Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust (SECAmb) hosted a successful first UK National Ambulance LGBT (lesbian, gay, bi-sexual, transgender) Network conference at the Amex Stadium in Brighton on Friday, (5 August).
Feedback from the day was extremely positive as the Trust welcomed colleagues from across the country to the event.
SECAmb’s Acting Chief Executive, Geraint Davies, who opened the conference said: “I was really pleased to see the conference attended by delegates from all ambulance services in England & Wales. Given its success I have no hesitation to committing to SECAmb hosting next year’s conference again to actively support equality and diversity across ambulance services nationally.”
SECAmb secured established key note speakers for the conference. Dr Joanna Semlyen Phd, lecturer in Psychology/Mental Health at Norwich Medical School at the University of East Anglia spoke on LGBT mental health issues and Caroline Paige, who transitioned after serving in the Royal Air Force, delivered a strong personal account of the transitioning process within the workplace.
The conference unveiled an ambulance ‘wrapped’ in Pride colours which drew cheers from the crowds on Saturday where a record 150 staff, family, friends and fellow ambulance service colleagues then joined the Pride parade.
Tim Fellows, SECAmb paramedic and Operating Unit Manager for Brighton and Hove said: “Across the weekend, we handled close to 500 emergency calls in the city. With additional ambulances and response cars on duty we were expertly supported by our Volunteer Community First Responders and St John Ambulance. I would like to thank everyone for their energy, hard work and skill in providing the ambulance resources that the city needed.”
Acting CEO Geraint Davies said: “Year-on-year our strong presence in the parade at the Pride event never fails to receive support from the crowds lining the streets and it makes me extremely proud to be part of SECAmb. Operationally, we tackled one of our busiest weekends in the year successfully with a well-planned response and I join Tim in thanking all volunteers and staff for the dedication they have shown to their job and the community.”