In any workplace, it's important to be as inclusive as possible. This means being mindful of the different ways people identify themselves and making sure everyone feels comfortable and respected. For LGBTQIA+ employees, this can mean feeling seen and acknowledged in a workplace that may not always be welcoming or supportive. Here are five ways you can make your workplace more LGBTQIA+ inclusive.
Allow Staff To Come Out When and If They Feel Ready To
LGBTQIA+ people are everywhere, and they're just like everyone else. They come from all walks of life, and they have a wide range of talents and skills. So it makes perfect sense that you would want them working for your company.
But there's one big problem: many LGBTQIA+ people don't feel safe coming out at work. In fact, according to a study by the Human Rights Campaign, only 26 percent of LGBTQIA+ employees feel comfortable being open about their sexual orientation or gender identity at work. That means 74 percent of LGBTQIA+ employees are hiding who they are!
Why is this such a big deal? Because when people can't be themselves at work, it takes a toll on their mental and physical health. According to the same study, 60 percent of LGBTQIA+ employees who are closeted at work report high levels of anxiety, and 54 percent say they're depressed.
Take An Interest In Their Partner
Once someone has come out as LGBTQIA+, you can still ask the same questions about their partner. It's important to remember that not everyone is open about their sexuality, so it's okay to ask private questions about someone's partner. Just be sure to respect their privacy if they choose not to answer.
Educate, Educate, Educate
Just because someone is a part of the LGBTQIA+ community does not make it their job to educate you on all things queer.
There are many things to keep in mind when trying to be more LGBTQIA+ inclusive in your workplace. One of the most important is to stay educated about things within the community. It's important to be aware of current issues and challenges that LGBTQIA+ individuals face, as well as their history and experiences. This will help you create a more welcoming and inclusive environment for everyone.
Here are five ways you can do that:
1) Learn about the history of the LGBTQIA+ community.
2) Follow LGBTQIA+ news outlets and blogs.
3) Attend workshops and events about LGBTQIA+ issues.
4) Advocate for inclusive policies in your workplace.
5) Listen to and learn from the experiences of LGBTQIA+ employees in your company.
At Least Try To Make An Effort With Others Pronouns
It is incredibly important to people that you use their correct pronouns. Misgendering someone can be incredibly harmful and can make them feel disrespected, invalidated, and alone. When you use someone's correct pronouns, you are telling them that you recognize them for who they are and that you respect them. Pronouns are an important part of someone's identity, and it is crucial to get them right.
When it comes to asking someone their preferred pronouns, there are a few things you can do to make the process easier for everyone involved. First, try to be aware of what your own pronouns are. This will help you avoid making assumptions about someone else's pronouns. Second, always use the person's preferred name and pronouns whenever possible. Third, be respectful and understanding if the person takes a little longer to answer or has difficulty explaining their pronoun preference. Finally, thank the person for being open and inclusive!
Stand Up For People In Your Workplace
It's important to stand up for those members of the LGBTQIA+ community within your workplace when they are discriminated against. Discrimination can take many forms, such as verbal abuse, physical violence, or exclusion from company events. By speaking out against discrimination, you can help create a more inclusive workplace for everyone.
The bottom line is that businesses should be striving to make all employees feel safe, welcome and included in the workplace. This not only makes good business sense, but it’s also the right thing to do. Discrimination against members of the LGBTQIA+ community is wrong, and we need to stand up against it together. Have you ever experienced discrimination or felt unwelcome in your workplace because of your sexuality or gender identity?