For Pride month, Anneliese Dodds MP, Shadow Women and Equalities Secretary, and I brought together mental health and LGBT+ organisations to discuss the challenges facing the mental health of LGBT+ people.
Today, Trans Visibility Day, is a day that we celebrate each trans and nonbinary person, whether you choose to be visible or not, and reaffirm our commitment to stand against discrimination, bigotry and all forms of trans exclusionary behaviour.
When wider society discusses trans issues, too often trans people have to deal with vitriolic and discriminatory language which has a profound impact on wellbeing.
In October 2020, I organised and chaired a roundtable with leading trans charities to discuss mental health, discrimination, and how we can work together to tackle it.
I will always be an ally of the trans community. As MP for Tooting and Shadow Minister for Mental Health, I want to be a voice for everyone - including the LGBTQ+ community - and I will continue to uphold LGBT+ Labour’s 10 pledges, which I signed up to during the 2020 Labour leadership race, outlined below.
The ongoing pandemic has fundamentally changed the way we live our lives, and it is understandable that this will have an impact on our mental health.
As we enter a national lockdown, it is vital that we all take care of our mental health. There are many brilliant services available to offer advice and support, and there is never any shame in asking for help.
If you are facing a mental health crisis, you can call the Samaritans on 116 123, any time, day or night. If you are not comfortable speaking over the phone, you can also text SHOUT to 85258. They also have an advice page offering tips on how to take care of your mental health during the pandemic.
If you are aged between 13-25, you can call The Mix on 0808 808 4994, with any question. They will connect you with experts and peers who will give you the support and advice you need. You can also phone Childline on 0800 1111, or speak directly to a counsellor here.
For the LGBT+ community, you can call Switchboard on 0300 330 0630 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. All phone operators identify as LGBT+. Stonewall are also available on 08000 50 2020 for advice on a range of issues.
If you are facing domestic abuse, you can call Refuge on 0808 2000 247, or access their online chat feature here. Women’s Aid live chat feature is also open here. Both of these websites have an option to quickly exit their sites and wipe them from your browser history.