The start of a New Year often brings with it change and progress, but it seems, sadly not for millions of people who still face discrimination, bullying and violence for just being LGBT.
Shannon Bond’s article in the FT last week makes a shocking but unsurprising read as to how far behind we are in respect of progress where sexual orientation is concerned. It is crushing that in this day and age a person’s sexuality can still be an issue and in some countries a crime. Shannon Bond’s article looks specifically at the struggle that many LGBT youth face at school and within their own families and communities.
However, bullying and discrimination does not stop at school and all too often LGBT employees find themselves facing discrimination and bullying in the workplace explains Discrimination Solicitor Jasmine van Loggerenberg.
Employers need to act to ensure that their workplace culture does not allow for such conduct and that they have clear policies as to what is unacceptable conduct in the workplace and the disciplinary measures that will be taken in respect of any breach of their policies. It is in an employer’s best interests to ensure that their employees are given good and sufficient training in respect of Equality and Diversity not least to foster a good, happy and healthy working environment but also to avoid tribunal claims which can be extremely damaging to the reputation of a business.
Employees should not have to tolerate bullying or discrimination in the workplace and if you are experiencing such conduct you should raise your concerns with Human Resources and if necessary raise a grievance so that your employer can properly investigate your complaints as they should do. You may also wish to seek legal advice as to whether you have a claim you can bring before an employment tribunal if matters do not resolve internally. Too many LGBT employees are suffering in silence at work and the time has come to take a stand. An employee’s sexuality should not be a workplace issue or an issue full stop.
For more information call Slater and Gordon Lawyers on freephone 0800 916 9060 or contact us online.