A female ex-carer requests women only care and when she's sent a man is told 'it’s alright because he’s gay...'

I am now 58 and I first started to need home care in 2007 following a back injury.  I was a carer myself and I hurt my back at work when working alongside another carer who performed a manoeuvre incorrectly.  Since the initial injury I have undergone 4 extensive surgeries on my back and require personal care assistance twice a day. Because of the way I hurt my back in the first place, and the fact that I was a carer myself, I am very wary of anyone coming in to provide my care and it often takes me a while to trust someone new. During my working life I was always so careful to respect the privacy and dignity of the people I was caring for- especially when providing intimate or personal care.  Now that I have come to need this kind care myself I expect that the same care and concern be afforded to me.  I am a very private person and I've found it very hard to accept help.  I have always been clear that I only ever want to receive care from a person I trust and that person must be a woman.  Because of my anxiety about receiving care I have always stipulated that any new carer is to be introduced to me beforehand.  For a long time this was understood and respected by the care company. 


In about 2017 my then care provider sent a male carer to my door without any warning!  I of course sent him away and did not let him into my house.  Thankfully my husband was able to help me with my medication, however he is not well himself so I really would rather not burden him with my care and put unnecessary strain on our marriage.  The care provider later phoned to ask why I had sent the carer away so I replied ‘because he’s man’.  The response I got was quite incredible - they said ‘But it’s alright because he’s gay.’  So they were trying to pressure me to accept care from this man because he was gay and therefore in their minds not the same as a man.  They did not send him back again thankfully.  Sometimes the care company would phone up at the last minute and say that they had no one suitable to provide my care and asked my husband to do it - they still took our money though and my husband didn’t get paid!  


After that company went bust another company stepped in.  This company also sent a man on one ocassion- I told him he had to leave and he was very apologetic.  Not only is it unfair on me - showing a complete disregard for my rights to dignity and respect, it’s unfair to the male employees who get sent where they are not wanted.