Pride and rainbow matters
Queensland Teachers' Journal, Vol 127 No number 4, 3 June 2022, page no. 21
The QTU’s newly established Pride Committee had its first opportunity to meet face to face in May, with our inaugural training day. Committee members engaged in training regarding the Union’s democratic structures, leave provisions, and Union processes for committee participation, and were also introduced to the QTU policy documents related to the Pride Committee’s areas of responsibility. There was fantastic energy on the day and the QTU will be well served by this committee.
Tuesday 17 May was the International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia, Intersexism and Transphobia, known as IDAHOBIT.
The Department of Education hosted an IDAHOBIT event to celebrate, using it to launch its Proud@Work strategy, which encourages employees to bring their whole selves to work. Director-General Michael De’Ath gave the keynote address, commenting that it is the responsibility of all staff to seek out opportunities to understand the LGBTIQ+ community. He recognised IDAHOBIT day as an opportunity for allies to be active supporters of LGBTIQ+ rights in the workplace. Pride Committee Chair Shane Hancock said: “It is great to see our employer recognising the significance of observing IDAHOBIT for staff and students who identify. The department should be congratulated for taking real steps to create systemic change by committing to workforce diversity through their inclusive education policy and Proud@Work strategy.
All employees were invited to attend the livestream of the event, a recording of which is available on OnePortal. A number of schools also celebrated IDAHOBIT day, including Pallara State School (pictured).
Relationship and reproductive health education provider True recently launched a new animation, “Being Me”, which features a young person who struggles with their identity but ultimately realises that support is available. It is a lovely, age-appropriate resource that members may find useful.
The Education Minister attended the launch event, along with a QTU delegation and other interested community groups. At the launch, Minister Grace stated that she wants to ensure our schools are inclusive, supportive and welcoming. She recognised the important role that schools play in supporting LGBTIQ+ students and that the department is working to have parents and families involved in this work.
Members who would like to learn more about supporting rainbow students are invited to take part in PD jointly run by QuEST and True. Like all QuEST courses, these are run on a cost recovery basis; the cost for the full day course is $50. The training is being offered at the QTU’s Milton headquarters in August and on the Sunshine Coast in October. We are also exploring online delivery options. See https://www.qtu.asn.au/questtrue for more information.
Queer and Here excursion
Members who run Rainbow Clubs for their students or who work supporting LGBTIQ+ students may be interested in two forthcoming excursion opportunities in Brisbane. The first is at the end of this term and the second is at the end of Semester 2. The events aim to educate, celebrate and support LGBTIQ+ students and allies through a day filled with trivia, networking, games, PG drag shows, and ends with a powerful and fun Q&A. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for details.
Rainbow Action Group
If you identify as part of the LGBTIQ+ community or as an ally and would like to keep up to date with rainbow matters, please join the QTU’s Rainbow Action Group via https://www.qtu.asn.au/lgbtiqplus/join-qtu-rainbow-action-group