In February 2021, we launched the Care+ campaign to push for changes to policies and cultures so that these better support LGBT+ people (and other marginalised groups). Through surveys conducted over the last year and discussions with our campaign membership, we have documented how – across the board – students are suffering due to the oversight or neglect of LGBT+ issues.
Colleges and the University must make a commitment to respecting the needs and autonomy of the people that actually make up these institutions. They must be dedicated to accounting for and addressing the harms which specifically affect LGBT+ people. They must demonstrate their care for the community – not through platitudes or symbolism, but through concrete action.
Actions and Policies
- Colleges should make statements acknowledging the impacts of the pandemic and their policies on marginalised students. They should prominently signpost resources and support for LGBT+ students.
- College policies should account explicitly for the specific vulnerabilities faced by their LGBT+ communities, as well as other marginalised people, and accept responsibility for not adding to these with their actions.
- Welfare and disciplinary staff should receive specific training to enable them to support LGBT+ students. This is particularly crucial for tutors and disciplinary officers. The training should be compulsory and paid.
- Students should have autonomy over their accommodation. Colleges should acknowledge and produce policy to reflect the fact that students are best placed to understand their own needs and best interests, particularly where they are already marginalised.