For immediate release
November 6, 2012

Straight workplace allies advocating for LGBT equality

Nearly three-fourths of straight co-workers support policies that ban discrimination against LBGT coworkers

MILWAUKEE — A growing number of straight employees in the workplace are stepping forward and supporting the rights of their lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT coworkers), according to the 2012 Out & Equal Workplace Survey.

“Workplace discrimination continues to exist for LGBT workers,” says Jason Rae, executive director of the Wisconsin LGBT Chamber of Commerce. “This advocacy is critical for LGBT workers to feel safe and comfortable in the workplace. It helps create an inclusive environment where this type of behavior is recognized as unacceptable.”

According to the annual study, 62 percent of self-identified straight workplace allies are willing to speak up against anti-LGBT discussions when they occur. Additionally, half of heterosexual workplace allies (51 percent) say they speak up when hearing anti-gay remarks in the workplace.

In addition, the study found that LGBT employees are also more comfortable standing up for themselves when encountering discriminatory behavior. Three-fourths of LGBT employees speak up against anti- LGBT discussions in the workplace. Sixty-seven percent of LGBT employees speak up or report instances of anti-gay remarks in the workplace, an increase of 10 percent from the results of last year’s survey.

The annual study conducted this year by Harris Interactive in conjunction with Out & Equal Workplace Advocates and Witeck Communications. The results of the entire 2012 Out & Equal Survey can be found here.

The Wisconsin LGBT Chamber of Commerce is an organization of gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and LGBT-allied businesses, professionals and individuals throughout the state of Wisconsin. It offers networking opportunities, business development efforts within the LGBT community and educational programming to its members.

Membership information can be found online at: www.wislgbtchamber.com.

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