Today, Tuesday 17 May, is International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia, Interphobia and Transphobia (IDAHOBIT).
32 years ago – on 17 May 1990 – the World Health Organization removed homosexuality from the Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems. IDAHOBIT celebrates LGBTIQ+ people globally and raises awareness for the work still needed to combat discrimination – as shown by the below statistics.
- 75 per cent of LGBTIQ+ youth experience some form of discrimination
- 77 per cent of trans and gender diverse people report being discriminated against in the past 12 months
- 35 per cent of LGBTIQ+ Australians have experienced verbal abuse in the past 12 months
- 39 per cent of LGBTIQ+ people have experienced depression in the past 12 months (compared to 6.2 per cent of the general population)*
Homophobia, biphobia, interphobia and transphobia can occur online or face-to-face and affect everyone by creating spaces where people feel unsafe and like they can't be themselves.
Sexuality and gender identity or intersex status aren't always visible, so creating a culture where everyone feels safe, even if there aren't any visibly members of the LGBTIQ+ community is even more important.
CFA Manager Diversity and Inclusion Dr Tasha Weir said that creating an inclusive culture that supports all diversity was vital to the strength of CFA.
“Getting involved with days such as IDAHOBIT are a fantastic way to reiterate CFA’s commitment to diversity and inclusion," Tasha said.
“Our strength lies in our diversity and we are proud of the widely diverse member base we have. Our volunteers come from all walks of life with a common goal – to protect lives and property.
“We stand as allies of the LGBTIQ+ community today and every day. We recognise the work we still need to do to build and retain a culture that respects and embraces gender and sexual diversity. We are in the process of updating our whole-of-organisation Diversity and Inclusion Strategy, which includes a focus on LGBTIQ+ inclusion.
The strategy will be informed by best practice and lived experience, with our team keen to hear from members.”
There are a number of ways members can get involved on IDAHOBIT and beyond. The Diversity and Inclusion team will run two LGBTIQ+ Awareness and Allyship workshops in on 19 May and 21 June.
Members can also access the LGBTIQ+ Inclusion learning module on the learning hub.
You can find out more about IDAHOBIT here.