How Your Human Resources Team Can Prevent Homophobia In The Workplace - CheckSocial

Unfortunately, in Australia, 50% of the LGBTQIA+ community have experienced harassment or prejudicial treatment in the workplace and 77% of transgender and gender diverse people have reported being discriminated against in the past 12 months.

This International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia, Intersexism and Transphobia (IDAHOBIT) we’re reflecting on how human resources teams can support their LGBTQ+ employees by preventing discrimination in the workplace.

What issues do homophobia, biphobia, intersexism and transphobia cause in the workplace?

Creating a culture where all employees feel safe is imperative to a workplace free of discrimination.

An employee’s sexuality or gender identity isn’t always visible and discriminatory behaviour, no matter how seemingly mild or harmless, can cause issues in the workplace.

Discriminatory behaviours aren’t always openly offensive but can be an underlying attitude of intolerance or disregard for other employees. Sometimes organisations contribute to this by not having policies, statements or processes in regard to their support for LGBTQ+ employees.

This can cause workplace issues such as:

  • Harm to the health and safety of employees
  • Employees feeling unable to freely express themselves or speak about their lives
  • Tension between team members
  • Legal issues relating to discrimination
  • Reputational damage to the organisation
  • An inability to attract and retain talent

Preventing homophobia, biphobia, intersexism and transphobia in the workplace

Your organisation and HR team can take action to prevent these discriminatory behaviours from entering your workplace by:

  • Ensuring you have anti-discrimination policies in place that include sexual orientation and gender identity
  • Keeping up to date knowledge on anti-discrimination and health and safety legislation
  • Running LGBTQ+ workplace inclusion training with employees as part of onboarding
  • Reprimanding homophobic behaviour if it does occur and having processes in place to manage it
  • Including statements of your diversity, equity and inclusion practices on your website and in job advertisements
  • Ensuring your hiring process is non-discriminatory
  • Having processes in place to avoid hiring employees that display discriminatory behaviours

How to avoid hiring employees who display discriminatory behaviours

All organisations should be actively avoiding employees who exhibit these behaviours due to the risk they pose to your organisation’s reputation and the safety and wellbeing of your LGBTQ+ employees.

The way that people behave online can provide powerful insights into whether they display these behaviours and can indicate the level of risk they may pose to the workplace.

Social media screening can be used in the hiring process to help your HR team actively avoid hiring employees who exhibit these behaviours and prevent issues from occuring once they’re hired.

At CheckSocial, we use three cultural fit indicators in our reports that outline any behaviours found:

  • Discriminatory behaviours: such as sexism, racism, homophobia, transphobia and hate speech
  • Unprofessional behaviours: such as strong language and online bullying
  • Criminal behaviours: such as indications of violence and incitement

Of all of the digital footprint checks we have provided, 1 in 5 candidates have shown an indication of at least one of these behaviours and 1 in 10 have been considered high-risk.

Integrating digital footprint checks into your hiring process will give you the tools to determine your candidate’s potential risks, cultural fit and alignment with your values and avoid those who have the potential to cause harm to your workplace.

By demonstrating your support for the LGBTQ+ community you can foster an inclusive environment where all of your employees feel safe and respected, and will attract and retain talent with values that align with your organisation’s.

Download a free sample report

To get an example of what a digital footprint check looks like, the information they include and the types of content they flag, you can download a free sample report.

The 23-page sample includes:

  • A Candidate Risk Score and Cultural Fit Assessment
  • An outline of our cultural fit indicators
  • Examples of content that indicate discriminatory, unprofessional and criminal behaviours
  • Examples of other candidate insights

Download a FREE
Sample Digital Footprint Report