A new web section for the Ku-ring-gai Council will be used to gauge the needs of GLBT people in the area and the potential for developing new services.
The new section on the council’s website outlines counselling and support services — including links to ACON and the Gay and Lesbian Counselling Service — for the area’s gay and lesbian residents.
If the site provokes a high level of feedback there could be scope for the council to develop its own services.
“Statistics tell us there has to be a significant number of people within the Ku-ring-gai community who fit into that category. We don’t know if any of them need any kind of assistance from the council, any reference to any organisations that can help them,” said Ku-ring-gai community department worker Robbie Prince, an openly gay man who initiated the idea.
“I raised this a long time ago when I was in another role and there was a small amount of resistance to having something like that.
“I think there’s a feeling among some of the staff that they don’t want to rock the boat because we have a conservative community.”
Prince said he has now received full support from fellow council members and the Ku-ring-gai mayor, Elaine Malicki.
“If we found there was a definite need for something other than us just giving referrals then we would probably be trying to combine with other northside councils, like Hornsby or Lane Cove or some of those Pittwater councils, if we had to establish some kind of service ourselves.”
Prince has already started to work on strengthening ties with Hornsby council and Gay and Lesbians at Hornsby, a service for GLBTI people between 16 and 24.
info: View the site at www.kmc.nsw.gov.au/www/html/3395-gay-lesbian-and-transgender-communities.asp.