OII Australia and ACON announce three new resources to explain intersex to the LGBT* and broader communities, service providers and parents.
The resources have been produced by OII Australia, a national intersex-led Public Benevolent Institution that promotes human rights and health issues, and ACON, a leading LGBTI* health promotion organisation in NSW. OII and ACON have produced the resources to address a lack of awareness of intersex-related matters. They provide general information about on intersex issues, empower services to provide appropriate and sensitive care to intersex clients, and provide information and referrals to help parents of children with intersex variations.
“Intersex for allies” introduces intersex issues to a broad audience. A well-established resource by OII Australia, the partnership with ACON has helped to refine the document and make it available as a beautiful printed leaflet for the first time.
“Making your service intersex-friendly” is a completely new and timely guide to help services build intersex-inclusive practice. We hope that it will help organisations and businesses across Australia to better understand intersex, and respond to community needs. Businesses and institutions will find ways of making their services inclusive and respectful, including in their data collection. The following issues are addressed:
- Who are intersex people, and what do intersex clients need?
- Data collection on intersex, sexual orientation and gender.
- An example intake form.
- Anti-discrimination law.
- Disclosure and speaking up.
- Inclusive language.
- Body diversity issues.
- What health issues intersex people face.
The guide for parents is also new. It will reassure and help new parents (and potential parents), to welcome the birth of a child with atypical physical sex characteristics. Intersex people live happy and fulfilling lives, and this resource will help new parents to find the support and information they need to feel confident about the long term future of their child.
Update, 8 October: new employer resource
Employers’ guide to intersex inclusion developed in collaboration between OII Australia and Pride in Diversity. Written by Morgan Carpenter and Dawn Hough, the guide is kindly sponsored by IBM. A world-first, the guide presents information about intersex for employers, including:
- An introduction to intersex.
- Intersex bodies, identities, and inclusive language.
- Disclosure, medical issues in the workplace, and travel.
- Protections related to “intersex status” in Commonwealth law.
- Information for diversity and inclusion professionals.
- Top 10 ways to be an intersex ally.
- Information for parents of intersex children.
- Additional information and a glossary of terms.
On launching the new resources in May 2014, Morgan Carpenter, the president of OII Australia and the organisation’s project lead for this work, said:
We are delighted to welcome these beautiful and timely resources to introduce intersex to people who are unfamiliar with intersex issues, and help build a deeper understanding for people who know the basics. We would like to thank ACON, and in particular Teddy Cook, Anna Barker and Marvin Mico, for their work with us to create and distribute these resources.
ACON’s CEO Nicolas Parkhill says:
ACON is thrilled to partner with OII Australia to develop these important resources. We are committed to supporting the health and wellbeing of all LGBTI* people and we believe these resources will benefit intersex people by building the capacity of organisations to better understand intersex, and deliver appropriate and sensitive care.
Morgan Carpenter, President at OII Australia: firstname.lastname@example.org, +61 405 615 942
Nicolas Parkhill, CEO at ACON: email@example.com, +61 417 474 219
Michael Badorrek, Media and Communications Manager at ACON, firstname.lastname@example.org, +61 2 9206 2001
Preview selected pages below.
The Allies document is based in some parts on an Intersex for allies document by OII-USA, with permission. We also acknowledge a 2008 FAQ by OII and a 2003 FAQ by the Portland Intersex Initiative. The Parents leaflet is based on a similar resource prepared by OII-USA, and an earlier 2008 Handbook for Parents by OII. The Services leaflet is entirely new.
The following links provide more information on each resource.
- Intersex for allies
- Information for parents
- Making your service intersex-friendly
- Employers’ guide to intersex inclusion
- All FAQs listed – a curated list of key articles on the OII Australia site.
Media and press
- Read this press release on the ACON website
- Gay News Network (2 June 2014) “OII releases new resource on intersex issues“
- NSW Teachers’ Federation on “New intersex resources”
- Victorian Equal Opportunity & Human Rights Commission on “New resources explain intersex to allies, parents and service providers”
- IRIN (UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs) on “LGBTI rights – still not there yet”
* LGBT: lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender.
* LGBTI: lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex.