The Leeds, Grenville and Lanark District Health Unit are discussing the importance of Pride.

Public Health Nurse Kathryn Allwright says the health unit really recognizes the stigma directed towards people with LGBTQ2S identities.

“(Stigma) really creates an environment where their personal health outcomes are at risk. Due to the stigma, LGBTQ2S persons may face limited access to services, education, employment, housing and social inclusion.”

Allwright says that is why the health unit participates in Pride and established a Positive Space Committee. The committee was founded in 2017 and Allwright says it allows them to show their ally-ship and support for inclusion and also work with inclusion within their own agency.

“We are focused on fostering a more inclusive, positive space for LGBTQ2S clients, staff, volunteers and visitors.”

Allwright says the health unit has been learning more from people in the community who identify as LGBTQ2S as well as community partners who have been involved with this work. Allwright adds they are really hoping that others can choose inclusion.

Allwrigtht says the health unit has been participating in Pride this year and previous years and they really appreciate walking with the community in those events.

The health unit says people can support positive space work in the community by being compassionate towards what influences other people’s health, choosing inclusion where you live, work and play and learning more about sexual orientation, and gender identify and expression as they relate to health through their website here.