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Three quarters of LGBT+ women fear coming out at work

Three quarters of LGBT women and non-binary professionals are reluctant to fully come out at work, a new study has found.

New research from LGBT networking hub myGwork found seven out of 10 LGBT women and non-binary professionals experience discrimination at work. 

Additionally, 79% said it is tougher for LGBT women and non-binary people to break the glass ceiling than straight cis-gender women. 

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The study comes during Lesbian Visibility Week which is dedicated to increasing the awareness of lesbian women and their issues. 

Adrien and Pierre Gaubert, co-founders of myGwork said the research has shown workplaces have a long way to go to resolve LGBT women’s challenges. 

They said: “Our findings confirm that lesbians are statistically less likely than their gay male colleagues to be out at work, face much higher rates of discrimination and are not getting the adequate support they need from management and HR to progress. 

“Employers need to step up through things such as authentic support and allyship from the c-suite, as well as investment in better LGBT education, so that leaders are equipped to deal with discrimination and retain this valuable talent pool.” 

However, they said employers seem to be making positive changes including increased representation. 

“On a positive note, we are delighted to learn about the increasing number of allies and LGBT role models, helping to inspire the younger generations in the community,” they said. “This clearly demonstrates that many companies are moving in the right direction.” 

Michelle Raymond, business development director at myGwork said employers should collaborate with their employees in order to achieve further inclusivity. 

She said: "Lesbian representation matters because it's not just about visibility. To create a workplace that is truly inclusive and supportive, businesses need to actively listen to and learn from their employees.  

“By embracing diversity and championing inclusivity, we can create a work environment that not only accepts but celebrates all identities."  

For this research, myGwork interviewed 2,364 LGBT women and non-binary professionals of working age from around the world across all age groups and industry sectors.