One in five (21 per cent) workplaces told the TUC they do not have any policies in place to support their LGBT staff at work, according to a new poll published today (30 June).
The poll of around 1,000 HR managers – run for the TUC by YouGov and published today on the first day of the TUC’s annual LGBT+ conference – also found:
- Bullying and harassment: Only half (51 per cent) of managers surveyed told the TUC they have a policy prohibiting discrimination, bullying and harassment against LGBT workers in their workplace. Less than half (47 per cent) said they have a clear reporting route for workers to raise concerns about discrimination, bullying and harassment against LGBT workers – even though one in seven (15 per cent) managers have responded to bullying, harassment or discrimination against one or more LGBT workers.
- Trans workers: Just one in four (25 per cent) managers said that they have a policy setting out support for trans (including non-binary) workers who wish to transition to live as another gender.
- Family-friendly working: Less than half (47 per cent) of HR managers told the TUC that they have family policies (such as adoption, maternity, paternity and shared parental leave policies) that apply equally to LGBT workers.
Of those HR managers whose workplaces that have LGBT policies in place, only around one in three (34 per cent) have reviewed those policies in the last 12 months.
More than one in four (28 per cent) can’t remember when they last looked at them.
LGBT pay gap
The most recent research suggests there is a 16 per cent LGBT pay gap, meaning LGBT workers are effectively paid £6,703 less per year.
But the new poll revealed that only one in eight (13 per cent) of the workplaces the TUC spoke to currently monitor the pay gap between LGBT workers’ pay and non-LGBT workers’ pay.
So, the TUC says it is unsurprising that only one in five (20 per cent) managers said that they have a LGBT action plan to address inequalities identified through monitoring exercises.
TUC General Secretary Frances O’Grady said: “Lesbian, gay, bi and trans people deserve to feel safe and to be respected at work.
“But it’s shocking so many workplaces don’t have specific policies in place to support their LGBT staff.
“Without these policies, too many LGBT workers experience bullying, harassment and discrimination at work.
“A step change is long overdue. Ministers must introduce a new duty on employers to protect all workers from harassment by customers and clients.
“And government should also introduce a statutory requirement for large employers to report on their LGBT pay gaps – in the same way they do their gender pay gaps – with action plans detailing how bosses will address these inequalities.”
Government action needed
The TUC is calling on the government to introduce a range of measures to support LGBT people at work, including:
- LGBT pay gap reporting: Ministers should introduce a statutory requirement for large employers to report their LGBT pay gaps and employment rates – with regular monitoring and action plans detailing how employers will address these inequalities. Polling suggests that the LGBT pay gap is around 16 per cent.
- Protection from workplace bullying and harassment: The government must consult with unions on a strategy to make sure workplaces are safe for all LGBT people. As a minimum, the government should introduce a new duty on employers to protect workers from harassment by customers and clients.
This article first appeared on the TUC website and is reproduced here with their kind permission.