February is LGBT+ history month.
A time to reflect on the struggles that LGBT+ people have fought and won and to educate everyone on the reason solidarity is so important.
Why is LGBT+ equality important?
Despite huge strides in LGBT+ equality in the last few years, Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT+) workers still face discrimination in the workplace because of their sexual orientation or being trans.
Our LGBT+ members tells us that many workers still face homophobic, biphobic or transphobic comments, ‘jokes’ based on harmful stereotypes threats, or worse – from both colleagues and customers or clients.
LGBT+ workers are disproportionately sexually harassed and, in some cases, assaulted, in comparison to non-LGBT+ workers. LGBT+ women of colour are almost three times more likely to experience sexual assault at work.
What does GMB do to support LGBT+ people?
GMB campaigns and fights for better rights, pay and conditions for all LGBT+ workers.
Ensuring that equality is at the forefront of everything we do – making work and society a better, safer place for everyone – is part of our core values.
This has to include Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender worker voices, whether it’s tackling homophobia in the workplace, celebrating Pride, or supporting our regional self organised LGBT+ groups.
GMB also campaigns and lobbies the government at both a local and national level on a range of equality issues. Being a member of GMB is therefore also about ensuring that LGBT+ voices are heard not just at work but also in wider society.
Locally, Sandwell GMB members have recently been involved in ensuring policies are fully inclusive including the council’s Trans policy, Domestic abuse and Menopause policies.
How can I get involved?
Our LGBT+ members tell us that being a GMB member makes a huge difference to their working lives. If you want support at work, or need someone to talk to about your experiences please get in touch with our branch equality officer (in confidence) Sarah James or contact Cerys Way, GMB Birmingham & West Midlands Regional Equality Officer at Cerys.Way@gmb.org.uk who can also give you information on how to get involved with our regional LGBT+ members network – PROUD
Posted: 11th February 2022