LGBT Employees Face Discrimination, Wage Gap, Unemployment, And Health Consequences


A Williams Institute meta-analysis report (PDF) shows that LGBT people regularly face discrimination in the workplace, which leads to various negative impacts. Here are some important findings from the study:

- SEXUAL ORIENTATION DISCRIMINATION: Among lesbian, gay, and bisexual respondents, 27 percent faced discrimination based on their sexual orientation over a five-year period. Rates were higher for those were out, with 38 percent facing either harassment or job loss.

- SELF-CLOSETING: Only 25 percent of LGB respondents were out to all of their coworkers. (Another study found that those who were closeted were more likely to “languish or leave“.)

- GENDER IDENTITY DISCRIMINATION: As recently as 2011, 78 percent of transgender respondents have faced some form of workplace harassment or mistreatment based on their gender identity. Similarly high results were found in state-specific studies in California in 2009 (70 percent) and in Utah in 2010 (67 percent).

- WAGE GAP: Gay men consistently earn significantly less than heterosexual men.

- UNEMPLOYMENT: Large percentages of the transgender population are unemployed or have incomes far below the national average.

- NEGATIVE IMPACTS: Discrimination, fear of discrimination, and concealing one’s identity can have negative impacts on mental and physical health, productivity in the workplace, and job satisfaction.