(Im)Personalisation: Reconsidering the Personalisation Agenda in relation to Sexuality
Social Sciences Kingston University Kingston upon Thames, England
Sociology University of Surrey Guildford, England
The Personalisation Agenda in UK care services has been aimed at placing the individual at the centre of the social care services they may need. According to the British Government personalisation involves transferring power from state and service providers to citizens, summarised as "fair for all, personal to each". In this paper we consider what this means in relation to older lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) adults. We begin by examining what the personalisation of care means to older LGBT adults themselves; that is, what they see as important as "fair for all, personal to each". We then contextualise these empirical findings by placing the personalisation agenda in the context of sociological conceptualisations of sexual citizenship. We argue that our findings further illustrate the problems with this model of agency, occluding factors such as social class and access to social networks. Indeed, we contend that if policy markers are sincere about personalisation, they need to avoid locating this agenda within an individualistic remit; recognising and reacting to diversity, whilst recognising social structural impediments is important if personalisation is not to become impersonalisation. This, we argue, has implications beyond the UK context.