One in three LGBT people are harassed or bullied at work.
And only half are out at work, says a new study by the Trades Union Conference (TUC) released today.
With over 5,000 respondents the TUC says this makes the report one of the most comprehensive studies of what it’s like to be LGBT at work in the UK.
Key findings in the report
- Nearly two in five (39%) of respondents have been harassed or discriminated against by a colleague with over a quarter (29%) discriminated by their manager.
- 51% are ‘out’ (open about their sexuality) to everyone at work but that falls to just 36% of young people.
- 27% of bisexuals are out to no one.
- Almost half of trans people (48%) experience bullying or harassment at work compared to just over a third (35%) of non-trans respondents.
- 62% of all respondents have heard homophobic or biphobic remarks or jokes directed to others at work. 28% have faced this directly.
Bisexual, trans and young people are most at risk
Trans respondents face more bullying. When you look at the trans statistics, the figures jump from one in three to one in two.
Bisexual people fared worse than the average in other statistics, particularly around coming out. Only 13% of lesbians and gay men are out to nobody at work. But this rises to one-in-four among bisexual people.
Young people also fared worse, with 20% not out to anyone.
22% of people on zero hours contracts disclosed they weren’t out to anyone either. The TUC argues that zero hour contracts make them more vulnerable and therefore less able to be themselves.
TUC General Secretary Frances O’Grady said:
‘Let’s be clear – homophobia and transphobia at work is undermining, humiliating and can have a huge effect on mental health.
‘Employers must be clear that they have a zero tolerance attitude to harassment of their LGBT staff – and stand ready to treat any complaint seriously.’
Banning zero-hours contracts and abolishing tribunal fees are key recommendations of the report.
The TUC also argues LGBT-inclusive sex and relationship education in schools will ‘ensure homophobia, biphobia and transphobia are addressed as early as possible.’