Educational institutions feature strongly in Stonewall’s latest list of the top 100 most LGBT-inclusive employers.
Released today (Jan 30), the list finds 16 educational organisations – including 14 universities – deemed worthy of inclusion by the lesbian, gay, bi and trans equality charity.
For the fifth consecutive year, Cardiff University is the top-ranking educational institution, rising one place to crack the top ten for the first time.
“This achievement represents over a decade of commitment to LGBT+ equality,” said Cardiff University’s deputy vice-chancellor, professor Karen Holford, “including policy development, introducing LGBT+ into our curricula, increased support for our trans staff and students and working together with our LGBT+ student community and our fantastic allies to create an environment where people can truly be themselves.”
The university’s LGBT+ staff network, Enfys, also scooped the Network Group of the Year award.
We still don’t live in a world where everyone is able to be themselves in the workplace, as we know more than a third of LGBT staff hide who they are at work
– Sanjay Sood-Smith, Stonewall
Cardiff, together with the University of Sheffield and York St John University, were given a special commendation as some of the UK’s most trans-inclusive employers.
Highest climber in the chart is the University of Essex, up 36 places to 57.
“Our rise in the rankings clearly demonstrates the progress we have made in making the university a good place to work for everyone,” said trans-inclusion champion at the University of Essex, professor Christine Raines.
“However, we recognise there is still more we can do, and this year we will be extending our training for allies and reviewing the impact of our ‘Supporting trans and non-binary staff’ guidance.”
University of the Arts London makes the top 100 for the first time, the second highest ranking new entry at 72.
“To have made a leap of 230 places in a single year is a true demonstration of our progress,” said the institution’s pro vice-chancellor and UAL LGBTQ+ champion, Natalie Brett.
Sanjay Sood-Smith, Stonewall’s executive director of workplace & community programmes, made clear why initiatives such as the top 100 employers’ list remain fundamentally important.
“We still don’t live in a world where everyone is able to be themselves in the workplace, as we know more than a third of LGBT staff – 35 per cent – hide who they are at work,” he said.
“By taking steps to make their workplaces supportive and welcoming of all lesbian, gay, bi and trans people, these organisations are bringing us closer to a world where everyone is accepted without exception.
“All of the education organisations in this year’s list are playing a huge role in improving the lives of LGBT people, and should be very proud of their work.”
The full top 100 employers’ list can be seen here: stonewall.org.uk/top-100
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