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The voice of Scotland’s vibrant voluntary sector

Published by Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations

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Online community launched for LGBTQIA+ people in the voluntary sector

This news post is almost 2 years old

Charity So Straight has launched a groundbreaking project hoping to bring people together.

Campaigners have launched a new online community space for LGBTQIA+ people in the voluntary sector. 

Charity So Straight, the campaign group calling for charities to be more inclusive for LGBTQIA+ people, has launched the project to bring those working in the sector together. 

 Charity professionals and volunteers from all levels and roles can now apply to join the #CharitySoStraight Slack group, which aims to be a safe space for all LGBTQIA+ people to come together to share experiences of challenges they face, including homophobia, biphobia, transphobia and queerphobia. 

Organisers hope that the channel becomes a place where everyone can learn from and support each other as well as share good news stories about great places to work and volunteer, as well as inclusive practices. 

Jobs and trustee opportunities will also be shared for organisations that are seeking to become more diverse, with mentoring schemes where those who wish to be a Queer Trustee but don’t feel confident to make that step can be supported by someone currently in place. 

Charity So Straight founder, Kevin Taylor-McKnight, said “We have been overjoyed by the response we have had to the launch of the Slack group. And we have found that it has evolved into a space which has a real levelling effect - no matter what role or responsibility you have, your queerness will always be with you and may be something that you have to manage just to get through the day.

The Slack group also proudly confirms that it is a safe space for trans and non-binary people and outlines clear ground rules when applying to ensure that all conversations and participants are kind, courteous, inclusive and respectful. 

The group was launched in Pride month 2022 and has already had a very strong response with a real range of people signing up and engaging - from chief executives to data officers to trainers. 

Mr Taylor-McKnight added: “The next step is to ensure every corner of the voluntary sector sees and hears about this space so we can encourage as many LGBTQIA+ people to join as possible and create a real community of support, learning and friendship. 

“And ultimately create a strong network that can push forward the change that needs to happen to improve inclusivity and the working environments for LGBTQIA+ people.”