We want to make sure that our services, both in the community and in our buildings, feel safe and are accessible and inclusive for all young people.
We know that there may be barriers to accessing services for young people with particular personal characteristics (described as ‘protected characteristics’ under the 2010 Equality Act).
- being, or becoming, a transsexual person
- being pregnant, or on maternity leave
- race, including colour, nationality and ethnic or national origin
- religion, belief or lack of religion/belief
- sexual orientation
We also know that there may be barriers to accessing services for young people in specific circumstances, or who have particular needs.
- young people with communication support needs
- looked after young people and young people leaving the care system
- young carers
- young people with long term conditions
- young people who live in isolated or rural parts of Midlothian
- young parents
Lastly, we believe that all young people should be treated with respect regardless of their:
- employment status
- financial status
- education or achievements at school
- drug and/or alcohol use
Some of the ways that we make sure we’re taking all young people’s circumstances, experiences and identities into account are:
- challenging young people if they behave in a way, or crack jokes and make comments, that make other service users feel unwelcome or uncomfortable
- covering the cost of young people getting to and from their sessions by public transport costs
- not asking young people potentially sensitive questions in places where people could hear their answers, for example in our reception or waiting areas
- asking young people for their views on changes we can make so our services meet their needs
The Young People’s Charter we’ve developed means young people know exactly what to expect when they use our services.
And we’ve been awarded the LGBT Youth Scotland Charter Mark.
This mark is given to organisations that have successfully finished a programme that makes sure their policies and practice are inclusive of LGBT young people.