The Importance of Inclusivity
The Office of Adolescent Health (2015) defines inclusivity as "the degree to which services are receptive to, attentive to, and do not exclude the diverse backgrounds and needs of LGBTQ youth and families." In today's global climate, companies must recognize inclusivity for the good of their businesses and stakeholders. According to Saint-Germain, organizations will enhance LGBTQ inclusivity by taking action to improve awareness of LGBTQ terminology, words, and the variations between sexual identity and gender. These actions include ensuring the policies against bullying and harassment developed in an organization include aspects of gender identity and sexual orientation. These policy options serve to promote LGBTQ inclusivity in the organization. Organizations can also include positive information and materials on LGBTQ on marketing and other promotional materials. Staff development plans should include materials touching on sexual orientation and gender identity to promote staff understanding of LGBTQ and seek to ensure equal treatment of all members of the organization. Another way an organization can ensure LGBTQ inclusivity is using gender-neutral terms in program materials discussing body parts.
Reasons for Inclusivity
Inclusivity is important because knowing individuals who are members of LGBTQ is not easy and being inclusive in an organization ensures all the members feel respected and accepted regardless of their gender identity and sexual orientation. The reason is that many LGBTQ individuals choose to make their sexual identity and orientation private for safety and personal reasons. Inclusivity also ensures the organization shows respect and value for every individual and provides a supportive environment ensuring a high satisfaction rate.
The Benefits of Inclusivity
The relationship between client and the provider is improved by inclusivity through offering the skills and knowledge to empower LGBTQ individuals on self-determination and self-expression. Self-awareness training is also improved with inclusivity ensuring better client-patient relationship by reducing the impacts of personal attitudes, assumptions, and bias in service provision. Inclusivity also offers providers the opportunity to partner with other LGBTQ providers including law enforcement agencies improving the effectiveness of service provision. Inclusivity ensures more services are available for LGBTQ individuals because of improved information flow and better perspectives in the society augmenting available social services.
Office of adolescent health (2015). Understanding LGBTQ Youth & Ensuring Inclusivity in Teen Pregnancy Prevention Programs.