LGBT-friendly workplaces make business sense

Lunch-and-learn sessions, celebration of Pride can engage employees
By Brent Chamberlain
|Canadian HR Reporter|Last Updated: 07/17/2012

In Canada, where diversity and equity have been part of the HR lexicon for decades, many assume pressing issues for the lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans-identified (LGBT) community in the workplace have been solved by legislation and cultural change.

For instance, almost all (93 per cent) LGBT Canadians described their employer’s overall attitude toward LGBT people as “tolerant,” according to a 2011 Angus Reid poll.

However, tolerance is only the first step toward building a truly inclusive work environment. More than one-quarter (28 per cent) of respondents were not open about their sexual orientation at work and 35 per cent of gay men and 40 per cent of lesbian respondents said they had experienced some sort of discrimination during their professional lives.