Many businesses do not know they have any gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender or queer employees. LGBTQ employees may spend a good portion of their energy hiding and compartmentalizing their personal lives so as to avoid potentially negative consequences in the workplace.
And while employers might prefer that all of their employees kept their personal lives out of the office, many of the casual conversations that occur daily make it extremely difficult to do so. Employees socialize by asking how their weekends were or asking about friends and family, and employers often have events to which families or significant others are invited. Whether or not a LGBTQ employee has a partner or children, these situations prove difficult and sometimes painful to avoid. Having inclusive protections and benefits are keystone practices to attracting and retaining a diverse workforce.
Inclusive workplace policies impacts more than the LGBTQ population. Fair-minded employees and consumers, particularly those in other minority populations, see LGBTQ inclusion as an indicator of an environment that supports all employees and their contributions.