Who are the world's best employers if you are LGBT?

Stonewall, a charity campaigning for lesbian, gay, bi and trans (LGBT) equality, has announced its Top Global Employers for 2020; those pushing for change in their company and wider society.

NY Pride balloons outside office buildings
Seventeen top global employers – Accenture, Allen & Overy, Baker McKenzie, BP, Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner, Dentons, Fidelity International, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, GSK, Herbert Smith Freehills, Hogan Lovells, HSBC, NatWest, Pinsent Masons, Simmons & Simmons, Vodafone and Zurich Insurance Group – have been recognised for their outstanding commitment to LGBT employment equality globally by the charity, Stonewall.

'Fragile progress being made'

Nancy Kelley, Chief Executive of Stonewall: “The progress we’ve made towards LGBT equality has never felt more fragile, so it’s inspiring to see the work our Top Global Employers are doing to protect and support their LGBT staff in some extremely difficult contexts. “We know that getting this right isn’t easy, but it is vital – especially because not all parts of the world are progressing at the same pace. While some countries moved forward this year, like Gabon, others, like Poland and Hungary, have rowed back the rights of LGBT people. All of this has been happening while we are still living through a global pandemic that’s hitting some LGBT people harder than others.“That’s why it’s crucial for companies like our top global employers to step up and make sure their LGBT staff and customers are looked after. Multinational companies have a powerful part to play in driving equality and progress in society. With their help, every lesbian, gay, bi and trans person can be accepted without exception, wherever they are in the world.”

Supporting inclusion – LGBTQ+

Anti-LGBT legislation is active in 70 countries around the world. There are also 120 countries where there are no laws protecting LGBT people from employment discrimination. Multinational companies must therefore work within ever-changing parameters to ensure its LGBT employees feel included and supported across the board. This is especially since as well as the legal context, research shows being out at work can come at significant financial and personal cost, and the often-complex legal and cultural environment for international assignees who are LGBT.
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Stonewall's Global Workplace Equality Index

Stonewall’s ninth Global Workplace Equality Index (GWEI) benchmarks workplace culture for LGBT staff in multinational organisations. The GWEI was created by Stonewall as part of the charity’s work to push LGBT equality forward internationally. Organisations with offices around the world work in partnership with Stonewall and use the GWEI to ensure their LGBT staff can be themselves at work.Participant organisations are assessed on their: employee policies, training, staff engagement, leadership, monitoring, procurement, community engagement and understanding local context, global mobility, and additional in-country activity. Special awards have also been given to five of the Top Global Employers.
  • Global LGBT Network Award: Allen & Overy’s A&Out Network 
  • Global Ally Programme Award: HSBC
  • Global Community Engagement Award: Accenture
  • Global Senior Champion Award: Igor Ostrowski, Dentons
  • Global Trans Inclusion Award: Baker McKenzie.

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