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IDAHOTB 2019: Usdaw shares TUC concerns over sexual harassment of LGBT workers

Date: 17 May 2019 The Trades Union Congress (TUC) has today launched a report about the sexual harassment of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people at work, to coincide with the annual International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia (IDAHOTB) on 17 May.
The top lines of the TUC report are:
  • Nearly 7 in 10 (68%) LGBT people admit to being sexually harassed at work
  • 1 in 5 LGBT women report that they have been sexually assaulted at work
  • As a result the TUC and Usdaw is calling for a new duty on employers to properly protect their staff from sexual harassment at work.
The full report is available at: www.tuc.org.uk/research-analysis/reports/sexual-harassment-lgbt-people-workplace

Paddy Lillis – Usdaw General Secretary says: “Harassment is one of the biggest problems LGBT members face in the workplace. The Equality Act makes it clear that harassment, including so called ‘jokes’, is unlawful. Employers must deal with any incidents quickly and effectively and take reasonable steps to prevent any such incidents from arising in the first place.

“We welcome the work of the TUC in lifting the lid on sexual harassment of LGBT workers, because it is a trade union issue. Sexual harassment creates an atmosphere and environment in the workplace that harms everyone. Usdaw believes that everyone has a right to work in a situation which is safe and supportive, free from fear of harassment or discrimination.

“Usdaw is here to make sure that there is no place for sexual harassment in our workplaces. Prevention is better than taking action after the event. Usdaw works with members and reps to raise awareness and to support and encourage members to report it. We also work with employers and negotiate workplace policies and procedures that prevent harassment from arising in the first place and ensure incidents are dealt with fairly, quickly and confidentially.

“We campaign all year round to raise awareness of sexual harassment and encourage our members to ‘call it out’. Today, on IDAHOTB, we put the spotlight on homophobia, transphobia and biphobia, standing together with our LGBT colleagues, as we do every day.”

Usdaw LGBT campaigning: https://www.usdaw.org.uk/Help-Advice/Equalities/LGBT

Notes for editors:
Usdaw (Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers) is the UK's fifth biggest and the fastest growing trade union with over 420,000 members. Membership has increased by more than one-third over the last couple of decades. Most Usdaw members work in the retail sector, but the union also has many members in transport, distribution, food manufacturing, chemicals and other trades.
For Usdaw press releases visit: http://www.usdaw.org.uk/news and you can follow us on Twitter @UsdawUnion

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