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New trans, gender diverse and non-binary project for SHQ and WAAC

SHQ and the WA AIDS Council (WAAC) have commenced an exciting new project with a primary focus on supporting transgender, gender diverse and non-binary people in WA, with funding provided by WA Department of Health.

This project will adopt a harm-reduction approach, and seek to explore:

  • Behaviours increasing risk of transmission of sexually transmissible infections (STIs) and blood-borne viruses, such as HIV and Hepatitis C
  • Perceptions of STI and BBV risk
  • Barriers to accessing health and support services
  • Testing behaviours
  • Health-seeking and health maintenance behaviours
  • Experiences in engaging with health services for sexual health
  • Knowledge acquisition of safer sex and harm reduction information
  • Safer sex practices
  • Harm reduction practices.

Key elements of the project will include engaging and consulting with transgender community members, and professionals working in the sexual health and drug and alcohol sectors, to create more positive experiences for both in managing sexual health issues and concerns.

The project will see through the development of a resource/s that aims to address the needs of both groups around improving STI and BBV outcomes.

Work to date

The project began in July 2020, and has so far involved setting-up, and regularly meeting with, reference and stakeholder groups to guide the project (including community representatives). Expressions of interest have also been sought from people who identify as trans and gender diverse to gauge current resources used, and further opportunities for engagement.

Surveys targeting the trans and gender diverse community, as well as clinical and non-clinical health professionals, were conducted to determine the sexual health needs of the community.

Transgender Resource Development – Short Summary of Survey Findings
  • SHQ and WAAC consulted closely with the trans and gender diverse community, along with related service providers, around the creation of the new resource/s.
  • The resource/s will offer education and information on sexual health for the trans, gender diverse and non-binary community, and health / other support services.
  • As part of the consultation process, online stakeholder surveys were recently conducted. There were 62 participants from the trans, gender diverse and non-binary community, and 58 participants working in clinical and non-clinical services.
  • The resource was welcomed by survey participants, with a clear need for more education and information in this space.
  • The content ideas for the resource were well received. These include trans and gender diverse specific information on sexual health and tips on creating a welcoming service environment for trans and gender diverse people. Participants also suggested a number of additional content ideas for inclusion.
  • Most would prefer to access the resource online, however service providers in particular would also like printed materials, such as leaflets, that can be shared with clients. The majority were comfortable with the resource being hosted on the SHQ website.
  • The next steps are to review the suggested content ideas and engage creative members of the trans community to develop the resource – with focus group testing to follow.
  • We would like to thank all of the survey participants who provided such detailed and valuable feedback!

How I can get involved?

We are always looking for more input!

Got thoughts about the project, or would like more information? We’d love to hear from you!

We’re also keen to hear about any existing resources you are currently using in this area, either as an individual or as a health professional.

Please contact Rebecca