One in nine LGBT+ employees have been bullied at work, new study shows

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New research has revealed that one in nine UK employees have experienced homophobic bullying in the workplace.

Despite half of all employees believing that employers should do more to support LGBT+ diversity at work, the study questions whether enough action is actually being taken.

A survey conducted by job site CV-Library revealed that out of 1,200 UK workers, 11.7% had been bullied because of their sexuality.

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It was discovered that a further 15.4% of employees had witnessed a colleague dealing with prejudice/discrimination based on their sexual orientation.

Out of the group of professionals asked, more than a third said they felt pressure to be open about their sexuality when starting a new job.

Three-quarters of those who identify as LGBT+ being open about their sexual orientation at work, but not all employers are supportive.

One in ten workers said their employers don’t actively support LGBT+ diversity in the workplace.

Lee Biggins, managing director of CV-Library, said: “It’s positive to see that so many professionals feel they can be open with their co-workers and managers in regards to their sexual orientation, but they should only share this information if they feel comfortable doing so.

“That said, it’s concerning to learn that so many are being affected by discrimination and bullying because of this and businesses need to ensure they take a zero-tolerance approach to this sort of behaviour, or intimidation of any kind.”

59% of participants in the survey said that their employer didn’t have any anti-discrimination policies in their workplace – and if they did, then it wasn’t something they were made aware of.

And 27% said they were unsure if they would feel confident enough to report homophobic bullying if they saw it happening at work.

Biggins continued: “It’s important that all businesses have anti-discrimination policies in place, and that staff are aware of the consequences should they breach these policies.

“Not only this, but it’s vital that you create a culture where staff feel confident and safe reporting anything they experience themselves, or that they witness, when it comes to discriminatory and unacceptable behaviour at work.”

Figures announced earlier this year revealed that homophobic bullying in British secondary schools has fallen by one-third over the last 10 years.

However, the Stonewall-commissioned study also showed that more than four in every five trans schoolchildren have self-harmed.

Nearly half of trans kids have attempted suicide.