'This is Us' conference to boost awareness of LGBTQ+ issues

A new one-day event, 'This is Us', will explore how employers can support an LGBTQ+ inclusive workplace. Set to take place on 4 October in Milton Keynes, it has attracted influential speakers from HR and government.

Image of person holding transgender symbol
With corporate diversity and inclusion fast rising up the HR and global mobility agendas, conversations are going beyond gender and race to encompass sexuality and lifestyle.However, as many studies show, there is much more to do. Mercer found nearly two-thirds (61%) of organisations are unware of the local and cultural environment or legal conditions for LGBT employees in all the locations they operate. Further, just a quarter of pre-assignment cultural training offers LGBT employees any information specific to their needs.A proactive approach to sharing knowledge and understanding can help to widen the profile of international assignees. Informed understanding and awareness of the issues people face is also critical for safeguarding every globally mobile employee’s wellbeing and safety, and safeguards assignment success.

Proactive about inclusion

This groundbreaking new LGBTQ+ conference, 'This Is Us', to be held in Milton Keynes in early October, aims to help businesses navigate the protocols and potential pitfalls, and ultimately enable everyone to feel able to bring their whole self to work.It will tackle a number of key issues surrounding corporate diversity and includes a high-level programme of speakers, including Jacqui Gavin, a diversity and inclusion champion at the Department for International Trade. 

Sharing knowledge to bridge the gaps with business

Event curator Meena Chander explained more about the event: “’This Is Us’ will be looking at the mechanics of focusing on corporate diversity, communicating inclusion and creating an LGBTQ+ inclusive workplace.“Just as importantly – if not more so – we’ll be looking at the people at the heart of the issue in sessions on sensitivity to multiple discrimination, the importance of non-LGBTQ+ allies and role models, and bridging the gap between education and the workplace.

Diversity and inclusion not discrimination

A government survey of LGBTQ+ people found 23% had experienced a negative or mixed reaction to their lifestyle from co-workers.Over three-quarters (77%) also experienced a subsequent negative experience which they didn’t feel comfortable enough to report.  “This quite simply isn’t good enough in 2018,” says Meena Chander. “That’s why we’ve pulled together an unparalleled panel of widely respected thought-leaders and speakers to present this hugely important programme. It really is going to be invaluable to any employer that values their staff above all else. “Legislation may be different the world over, but compassion, understanding of people and actually listening to what your staff need is universal – and will be explored in depth at This Is Us.”   

Inclusive global mobility

Bournes Relocation Solutions, this year’s Relocate Award winner for Excellence in Diversity and Inclusion, is among the voices in relocation and global mobility helping to respond by supporting companies and their employees. Last year it devised and ran a session in response to client needs with equality campaigner and advisory group Stonewall to help lead discussions about relocation and mobility for people who identify as LGBTQ+.Diversity and inclusion in this wider sense was also discussed Relocate Global Festival of Global Mobility Thinking. Panellist Michael Grover, senior global mobility consultant at Mercer, explored the challenges for selection where difference is not clearly signalled, such as for faith or sexual orientation.To find out more about This is Us, please follow the link.For related news and features, visit our HR pages. 
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