LGBT Discrimination in business

We like to think that the world is becoming more inclusive. Pride month is celebrated every year, LGBT discrimination is gaining more and more notoriety…

Yet, we have a long way to go before true equality is reached. Data demonstrates that hate crimes are going up, and despite so many more cases being reported, those leading to prosecution have statistically fallen.

The government has tried to overcome this issue by teaching acceptance in schools. Yet, the LGBTQ+ friendly curriculum was met with a certain degree of hostility, leading to some parents withdrawing their children from school altogether.


With the end of pride month 2021, there has never been a better time to remind everyone why the LGBTQ+ community still suffers. This article will help you discover LGBTQ+ Discrimination in business.

Discrimination in business laws in the UK

LGBTQ+ are protected by law in places of work. This includes employees, agency workers, trainees and even self-employed. Discrimination can affect 

  • Recruitment and selection
  • Promotions, training, pay and benefits
  • Redundancy and dismissal
  • Terms and conditions of employment

However, laws can only go a certain length. As previously mentioned, hate crimes are a surging trend, with crimes motivated by different sexual orientations doubling in the past five years. Did this reflect in business?

According to research, this greatly depends on the company, its culture, size, and even the level of authority presented by the LGBTQ+ individual.

For example, Senior level positions find it easier to come out. This is the opposite for junior or entry-level employees. Only about ⅓ of entry-level employees filled by LGBTQ+ find it comfortable to come out.

This statistics tell us that coming out is particularly challenging for newer employees, perhaps due to fear of discrimination from managers or coworkers. However, the fact that Seniors find it easier to come out is good news, since it shows a willingness to accept LGBTQ+ in management positions.

It’s not just about personality. Many LGBTQ+ find it easier to communicate with others when they don’t have to hide their sexuality. 

The statistics also tell us that women struggle a lot more than men to come out in the workplace, with only 58% finding themselves comfortable with their place of employment – compared to 70% of men.

The reason for this may be gender discrimination.

Stonewall’s findings

Stonewall has reported some extremely demoralising news in the past few months. These are just some of the findings provided by the charity:

  • 1 in 5 LGBTQ+ staff has been bullied or targeted by gossiping because of their sexuality. 
  • Nearly 15% of all trans people have been physically attacked by customers or co-workers. This number goes up if the LGBTQ+ person is non-white.
  • 25% of all bullying targeting trans people goes unreported, and 35% of all discrimination goes unreported.
  • In 8 LGBTQ+ doesn’t feel safe being out at work, and 12% wouldn’t report any bullying to their employers.
  • 33% of trans people don’t feel able to wear work attire representing themselves.

The message is clear. There’s still a long way to go for true equality to be achieved.

However, there are ways we can do this. LGBT Best is a business directory only including those businesses that champion equality above everything else.

You can find local businesses, or list your own, here. Together, we can slowly lower these statistics.

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