Scrub nurses

To create a workforce representative of the community it serves, NHS organisations should consider the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and non binary (LGBT+) communities. These resources, ideas and good practice will help you to make an inclusive working environment that encourages equality for the LGBT+ communities.

Did you know?

  • A quarter of patient-facing staff have heard colleagues make negative remarks about lesbian, gay or bisexual people. 
  • A quarter of lesbian, gay and bisexual staff say they have personally experienced bullying or poor treatment from colleagues in the last five years as a result of their sexual orientation.
  • A recent study found that 74 per cent of LGBT people lied about their sexuality or gender to protect themselves.
This can have a significant impact on your staff. Aim to make sure your organisation is inclusive and supportive for everyone. Find out more about how you can ensure LGBT equality in the workplace.

LGBT+ employees want to work for an organisation that allows them to be able to bring their authentic selves to work:
  • If you have a LGBT+ staff network, include a presence on your organisation’s website or on social media.
  • Publicise role models from your organisation, use Stonewall's diversity champions as an example that showcases LGBT+ role models.
To recruit from the widest possible talent pool in your local community think carefully about the following:

  • Ensure your adverts are representative, involve your LGBT+ staff network in recruitment practices.
  • Equality monitoring forms can put trans people off applying for a role. ACAS suggests something simple like having a 'other' tick box can be less daunting.
  • Take practical steps with Stonewall's Sexual Orientation Employer Toolkit to make your workplace more inclusive of lesbian, gay and bisexual people.
  • Make sure there is a positive culture around sharing data and making sure personal data around sexual orientation is as accurate as possible in your organisation. This guide from Stonewall explains the importance of collecting employees' personal data. 

To create a culture that is LGBT+ inclusive and open:

  • Be respectful of peoples’ privacy and do not share confidential information.
  • Make it clear that bullying and harassment are not tolerated in your organisation, see our tackling bullying in the NHS webpages.
  • Dress codes and uniforms should be gender-neutral and applied consistently throughout the organisation. You could use this resource from Stonewall on Trans Inclusive Policies and Benefits document to help make sure your organisation is trans inclusive.
  • Listen to this podcast on diversity monitoring from Royal Liverpool Hospitals to hear about their project and how disclosing helped people to feel more comfortable at work. 
  • Consider taking part in Stonewalls free Workplace Equality Index. This will help you understand how inclusive your organisation is to LGBT+ staff across a number of areas.

Further reading

Diversity and inclusion in the NHS Find out more from the diversity and inclusion section on the NHS Employers website. 
Stonewall's employer toolkit Use Stonewall's interactive toolkit to support you in employing LGBT+ staff.
Stonewall's trans inclusion guidance Learn more about trans inclusion policies and how to implement these in your organisation.
10 Steps to Trans Inclusion Stonewall has developed this helpful guidance, including ten steps to trans inclusion.
LGBT Health Read more about LGBT Health's top tips for employers in workplace inclusion.
a:gender Use this detailed guide from a:gender to understand more about how to manage gender re-assignment in the workplace.

Find out more about other community groups you may want to engage with and recruit into your organisation. 

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