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Awareness of services already available

  • The youth groups (4U, 4Me, 4Us) and one-to-one intervention service are already offering a lot of the support the younger LGBTQ+ people need but information sharing and communication about them is insufficient
  • People are largely unaware such services exist. The council needs to raise awareness of what is already on offer, simplify access, ensure there is enough capacity, and make sure it is promoted where the LGBT community (and intersectional groups) hang out, physically and virtually
  • Consider including some seasonal content in mainstream Portsmouth publications such as Flagship to raise the profile of the LGBTQ+ community and promote Pride

Working with schools

  • Many issues for LGBTQ+ people arise from other people’s reactions to them, particularly in school. Working more closely with schools across the city, with an initial focus on the schools in north Portsmouth (Castle View Academy, Springfield School and Trafalgar Academy) to raise awareness and educate teachers and pupils would be very beneficial
  • Schools are also often the gatekeeper for access to youth groups and one-to-one services
  • Take a more active role in how schools can approach creating gender-neutral changing facilities e.g. best practice and guidance
  • Help schools navigate the balance between providing dedicated facilities and the need to maintain single sex spaces, and the possible implications with parents. Educating parents is also part of the process

Working with other LGBTQ+ organisations and the VCSE sector

  • Many activities and spaces asked for are not typically provided by a city council, nor is Portsmouth City Council necessarily the preferred initiator. Given limited resources, working with partners in the VCSE sector and beyond could amplify the council’s direct services and activities and make access to services more comfortable/safe. These could include:
    • Developing links with religious groups
    • Recruiting ambassadors and group leaders from ethnic minorities; working more closely with EMAS, providing training to existing council staff on the cultural context
    • Using the locations of established groups/organisations such as MAKE or Young Carers at Paulsgrove Family Hub to provide itinerant support and workshops on an ad hoc basis to supplement the capacity of the regular LGBTQ+ groups
    • Funding different cultural events, activities and clubs, delivered by a trusted LGBTQ+ group such as Pride or Downtown Pompey

Working with businesses and employers

  • Champion EDI best practice with local businesses and employers, and within the council itself
  • Being more visible and brave in promoting Portsmouth Pride’s Gold Standard Accreditation

Information hub and facilitator

  • Consider creating a centralised information resource of LGBTQ+ services and activities in the city with signposting to relevant groups, social media sites, venues, clubs etc. Possibly something similar to the Local Offer website or Cost of Living Hub