Alex Ewings, Co-Chair of the LGBT Forum
Paramedic and ambulance manager, Alex Ewings, 34, is co-chair of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) forum at London Ambulance Service.
“London Ambulance Service was a friendly and supportive place for me to start my career as a young adult. I went straight from college to Hertfordshire University and did a paramedic science degree. It was completely coincidence, but one of the first ambulance crews I worked with on placement were both gay.
“It’s always a bit nerve wracking when you start a new job, but I found that the Service was supportive to new staff and my sexuality was never a barrier.
“My leadership role now allows me to meet so many people and I continue to meet new LGBT staff, which is great, as I can share my LAS LGBT experiences with them.
“My sexuality is no barrier to working for London Ambulance Service.”
“We work a lot in partnership with other emergency services and it’s easy to form friendships with other LGBT 999 colleagues. We also get invites to events such as the Metropolitan Police’s LGBT socials. I have loads of gay and straight friends across the Service.
“Being open in the workplace can help our patients too. I have a discreet rainbow badge that I am proud to wear on my uniform, which is small but can put patients at ease. It can help them open up and some patients make reference to it.
“I know patients who have felt more comfortable talking about their same sex next of kin when they see my badge, which is really important to help us address inequalities in access to health care for patients.
“I always knew I was accepted at work but I was nervous the first time I attended Pride. But I need not have worried. London is great City, I’m proud to work for London Ambulance Service, and I can definitely say that #LoveHappensHere.”