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LGBTQ+ meaning: what does LGBTQ+ stand for?

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LGBTQ+ definition

LGBTQ+ is an acronym that is used to describe lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer persons or the community. LGBTQ is frequently expanded in corresponding ways, as in LGBTQIA (to include intersex and asexual), or is rendered more simply as LGBTQ+. LGBTQ communities have been understood to encompass a variety of sexual orientations and identities beyond those directly referred to in the acronym, LGBTQ, since the early 21st century. Among them, for example, "questioning”, "intersex” and "agender” or “asexual”. 

LGBTQ inclusion is beneficial to businesses. According to a US report by Out Now, titled "LGBT 2020 - LGBT Diversity Show Me the Business Case", if companies adopted more successful inclusion policies for their LGBTQ+ employees, the US economy could save $9 billion yearly. This financial saving is partly attributed to the reduction in stress and health problems that LGBTQ+ employees face, when they experience prejudice or feel they must conceal their identities at work. The LGBTQ+ market's purchasing power and customer loyalty were also mentioned in the survey. Furthermore, clients are more likely to depart from establishments where instances of prejudice have been made public. 

Real-world context

  • Taking a stand: It's common for top-level behaviour to trickle down. However, a lot of LGBTQ+ workers don't think their leadership group is serious about creating an inclusive work environment. A good place to start is by outlining your company's position on LGBTQ+ inclusivity in plain and public terms. This will let both staff members and the larger community know what you support. 
  • Policies and protections in place: Ensuring that every employee is aware of where to find policies and information if they feel discriminated against is crucial, as well as guidance on what to do in the event that they encounter or see a violation. Emphasising the option for anonymous complaints can be beneficial because employees could be afraid of accidentally coming out as the ones who report harassment they have encountered. It's crucial to let staff members know what occurs once a report is submitted, since this can give them a sense of power and motivate them to speak up. 
  • Safe space: By providing more safe environments for LGBTQ+ employees, businesses can support the inclusion and belonging of their staff. Establishing employee resource groups (ERGs) and formally honouring significant LGBTQ+ holidays, such Pride Month and the International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia, and Transphobia, are two examples of how to do this. These areas can also be used to help train other staff members about LGBTQ+ matters, albeit that shouldn't be their main goal. 

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