Although trade unions have succeeded in winning equality in the law, much work remains to be done in ensuring that legislation is put into practice and that attitudes are changed in all workplaces.

42% of LGBTIQ people say their colleagues made unwelcome comments or asked unwelcome questions about their sex life, according to a major study published today by the UK TUC.

At industriAll Europe’s equalities working group this week, one union representative explained: “If you work in a big office there may not be a problem in coming out but if you work in a small factory it can be more difficult.”

Representatives from across Europe also explained the steps they are already taking:

  • An annual award for the most LGBTIQ friendly employer 
  • Equality training courses for shop stewards 
  • Including more LGBTIQ people on lists for workplace elections

Trade unions have a long history of participation in Pride demonstrations and industriAll Europe affiliates will again be out on the streets celebrating and fighting for equality this weekend.

Speaking ahead of this year’s Pride celebrations, industriAll Europe equalities working group chair Klaudia Frieben said: 

“Trade unions have a proud history of fighting for and winning legal equality for LGBTIQ people. But the truth is that too many workers are still facing discrimination at work or have to hide who they really are to avoid it. That can’t be the case in 2019 so the fight for equality remains as important as ever for us. Today we celebrate the progress we’ve made and demonstrate for the equality everyone deserves.”