In the year since Akron Children’s Hospital made its first formal connection with the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, questioning, and other sexualities (LGBTQ+) community by participating in the 2018 Akron Pride Festival, a lot has happened.
In June, Akron Children’s launched the Center for Gender-Affirming Medicine to help transgender and LGBTQ+ kids. The center includes a multidisciplinary team to care for kids ages 7 and older. The program offers everything from gender-affirming hormones and mental health care coordination to annual wellness checks and education to support for patients and families.
Another activity involves the distribution of rainbow-colored Pride pins to hospital employees meant to visibly demonstrate that the LGBTQ+ community has support at Akron Children’s.
Additionally, Akron Children’s is working with Kent State University to offer safe space ally training to employees. The training is designed to make the hospital more welcoming to people who identify as LGBTQ+ by providing hospital clinicians and staff with sensitivity training, appropriate terminology and other tools and information to ensure that a transgender or LGBTQ+ person feels safe, accepted and comfortable.
The commitment to supporting LGBTQ+ youth and the community in general is an important aspect to Akron Children’s.
Now, Akron Children’s is making its return to the Akron Pride Festival and this year, they are a sponsor, too! Employees are excited to once again come together to support the LGBTQ+ community.
“As a children’s hospital that prides itself in its close connection to the community, being a supportive presence at the Akron Pride Festival is essential,” said Dr. Katrina D. Lindsay, pediatric psychologist. “This act continues to communicate that we are a hospital that prides itself in the service of all children, adolescents and their families. I am particularly proud of our institution this year as marchers, participants and sponsors at the event and in celebrating Pride this year with our rainbow pins and shirts. It is days like this that I feel extra proud to be part of the Akron Children’s Hospital family.”
The Akron Pride Festival takes place Aug. 24. Akron Children’s employees, along with their families and friends, will kick off the day by participating in the March for Equality.
After the march, employees will be at the Akron Children’s booth, providing reliable health information for young people and their families, as well as sharing information on employment opportunities at the hospital. Come say hello and join us in celebrating diversity and acceptance.