New gender and sexuality commissioner to fight LGBTI discrimination

Written by The Age on . Posted in News & Updates

LGBTI Education

Helping transgender people keep jobs will be a top priority for Victoria's first gender and sexuality commissioner.

The state government has announced Rowena Allen's appointment to "champion the rights" of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) Victorians.

Only 5 per cent of transgender people kept their jobs after changing gender, Ms Allen said. "I'm looking forward to increasing that number," she said, adding that she planned to work with company boards to create workplace policies and cultures to help transgender people retain their jobs.

Ms Allen said she expected the profile of her new position would encourage more people to come forward with complaints of discrimination, and that she would work with the Equal Opportunity and Human Rights Commission when complaints were made.

Read more: theage.com.au

 

Dealing with uncomfortable sexual fantasies

Written by SHFPACT on . Posted in News & Updates

Sexual Fantasies

It was not your average ask. They'd been together for years, but this came as a shocking surprise. They had a rocking sex life, built on mutual trust, affection and respect for one another, and they'd explored all manner of things together. But during the deep recesses of one wild night, she asked him to do something to her that sent shivers down his spine in the worst kind of way. With a few simple words, she turned him off almost instantly, and broke a dream that had been so beautiful. While she was lying naked, beneath him, his confident, loving, smart, thirty-something, long-term partner asked him, "rape me?"

"I recoiled in what I guess was horror," he wrote, in an email asking me to write to readers for answers.

"How could I possibly 'rape' the woman I loved?"

He describes her reaction to his inaction. She tried to smooth it over with hurried 'don't worry about it darling' dismissals. She tried to bring him back to the wonderful world they'd been playing in moments before. "Forget I said it – it doesn't matter, come here… kiss me…"

But he couldn't. He couldn't kiss the woman he loved because he felt she had asked him to hurt her in the deepest possible way. And though he didn't – and wouldn't – do it, he felt that she, at some level, thought he would. And that would mean he was a monster.

Did she really think he was a monster?

"As soon as you say 'rape', you're talking about something altogether different to love and sex. You're talking about something that is a crime. It is a most vile act. It's an abuse. It's offensive, and it is not something you would do to anyone, let alone someone you cared for more than anyone. I couldn't understand why she wanted me to do that, and I couldn't do the next thing she asked: Forget it."

Read more: http://www.smh.com.au

 

SHFPACT feels the Vibe with Northcott

Written by SHFPACT on . Posted in News & Updates

Vibe Expo 2015

SHFPACT was invited to participate in the first Canberra Feel the Vibe Disability and Sexuality Forum and Expo on the 12th and 13th of June. A first-of-its-kind sexuality and disability expo and forum was held for adults with physical disabilities, their families, carers, advocates and disability support workers. The Feel the Vibe Forum and Expo aimed to lift the lid on sexuality and disability, two often taboo topics, by giving people with disabilities, their supporters and advocates more information about choices in regards to sexuality and disability. In addition and most importantly giving people with disabilities a voice and control over their lives as sexual beings.

Two staff members were invited to speak at the forum, Lisa Grant (Director Client Services) and Erin Smith (Professional and Community Education Officer). Lisa spoke on the importance of educating on the topics of sex, relationships, and parenting so we can properly communicate and ensure people with disability understand these human experiences. Erin discussed the intersection of disability and sexuality from within a human rights framework. Erin spoke at length about the ‘dignity of risk’; we have a right to make decision, take risks, learn from them and then try again. People with disabilities embarking on relationships should have the same dignity of risk as all other people.

At the Saturday evening expo health promotion staff, Riddhi Blackley and Amy Duncan, shared their knowledge with adults with physical disabilities, their families, carers, advocates and disability support workers about sexual health and answered questions. The SHFPACT info stand had games, hands-on displays, health promotion materials and give-aways. 

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