This week I'm presenting the second of three episodes in which you can hear the speakers at the recent Department of Health conference on LGBT Mental Health in Nottingham. (For more details see last week's part one).
Tim Franks is the Chief Executive of PACE, a leading London-based charity which promotes mental health and well-being within the lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans community there.
In his presentation Tim talks about the different reasons that LGBT people may have for connecting with Mental Health services. Like many of the day’s speakers he emphasises that whilst being different in these ways is not a mental illness, people have the experiences of discrimination to deal with and, of course, they can experience conditions such as depression or psychotic illnesses like anyone else.
Tim also raises interesting perspectives about the way therapeutic relationships can benefit when service users don’t need to explain aspects of their identity and simply feel that their sexual orientation or gender presentation is accepted. He says that in PACE the service providers ‘come out’ about their position so that the service user doesn’t need to.