2 August 2012
Celebrating gay pride
Gay Pride Parades are an opportunity for the diverse Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Trans (LGBT) community to celebrate, raise their profile and flag up campaigns like equal marriage.
The parades take many forms in different cities around the country, but all focus on celebrating the LGBT community and act as an opportunity to get together and celebrate diversity.
As Eileen Barnard-Harris’ article in the May 2012 edition of the TSSA Journal on page 27 explains, the Pride movement came out of the New York Stonewall Riots of the 1960s. The riots took place as a result of the local community taking a stand against inequality, remembering these events is an incredibly important part of LGBT history, and the issues fought for remain as important today as they did in the 1960’s.
TSSA represents all members and this means LGBT members in our workplaces, whether or not they choose to share their sexual orientation with work colleagues. TSSA believes everyone should have a positive and safe work experience and equality is at the heart of the trade union movement.
Research in 2008 asked the LGBT community whether they thought being openly gay at work can harm their prospects for promotion. The vast majority of respondents - 82% of lesbians and 75% of gay men - say that being open with everyone at work about being gay is not a good career move.
One in eight said that being out as gay at work would ‘definitely’ hold back their job promotion prospects.
Things have moved on and there is more scope to investigate employers now that the Equality Act 2010 is in place, however as recently as 2008, 14% of respondents were harassed at work in the UK last year because they were perceived to be lesbian or gay. Two out of three respondents rate their own employer as less than perfect in how they treat their own lesbian and gay employees.
According to Out Now the results show workplace gay Equality and Diversity policies are not filtering down into actual day-to-day life at work.
TSSA Spectrum have already attended London/World Pride and held a stall at York Pride in July. We are planning to attend UK Black Pride in London on 18 August, Manchester Pride on 25 August and Brighton Pride on 1 September. If you want to be part of this and help us hand out the Better Rail LGBT safety surveys please contact Kerry Abel, TSSA Equalities and Diversity Organiser on firstname.lastname@example.org
We want to hear from you about your experiences and want to encourage more reps and activists in the workplace.
· TSSA has a self-organised group Spectrum for LGBT members, if you or your colleagues want to find out more information, visit the TSSA website http://www.tssa.org.uk/en/Equalities/spectrum
· Spectrum and the Better Rail campaign have put together a survey for transport use in the LGBT community, please encourage your LGBT friends and colleagues to complete the survey either online here or on the postcard we have produced and if you think you can hand these out to your local LGBT bars and drop in centres, please contact email@example.com to send you some postcard surveys
Our local reps and branch activists are core to this union, we rely on your efforts to make all this happen.