I’ve been part of the program team at Equality California for more than five years now. For the last year, I have had the privilege of conducting LGBT sensitivity trainings to healthcare providers in the Central Valley. The trainings that we provide are definitely a highlight for all members of the program team.
Last month, we were contacted by the Dolores Huerta Foundation (DHF) to provide comprehensive LGBT sensitivity training to their staff. While we generally provide these trainings only to healthcare providers, we definitely recognize the need to provide these trainings across all sectors. The Dolores Huerta Foundation, a community organizing foundation, has been a phenomenal partner of ours in our Central Valley work, and we jumped at the opportunity.
The staff at DHF participated in LGBT sensitivity trainings in the past, and they are strong allies of the LGBT community. So I worked closely with them to customize the curriculum to meet all their needs. They wanted to learn more about creating safe spaces in their community and in the workplace, and how to actively promote LGBT equality. These are the kinds of trainings that I truly enjoy.
On July 6th, we provided DHF a comprehensive six-hour training. I brought my Spanish-speaking colleague Fred Mariscal with me, so that he could translate in real-time for a staff member who primarily spoke Spanish. Staff members asked thoughtful questions and felt comfortable sharing personal experiences. A highlight of the training was when we walked them through an activity called “Question, Interrupt, Challenge,” which presents different homophobic and transphobic scenarios, and has participants use “ally techniques” to assist in the situations. The DHF staff were engaged, as they shared personal stories and provided unique perspectives to each challenging scenario.
I want to thank the team at the Dolores Huerta Foundation for being such fantastic allies to the LGBT community. Even our most dedicated and loving allies continue to find new and interesting ways to participate in creating full and lasting equality.
If you have relationships with healthcare providers and clinics in the Central Valley or in the Inland Empire, we would love to hear from you. We want to ensure that the clinics in these regions are given the opportunity to participate in similar trainings. Please contact me, at Justin@eqca.org for more info on how to schedule a training.