UK pubcaster the BBC plans to implement new recommendations to create a more inclusive workplace for LGBTQ employees.
A review informed by 300 staff and input from UK LGBTQ rights advocacy group Stonewall made 10 recommendations, all of which have been accepted by the BBC’s executive committee. The recommendations are designed to educate leaders and staff about what’s important to LGBTQ staff; increase the prominence of LGBTQ staff, role models and the BBC Pride network; and empower LGBTQ staff to be comfortable about being open at work.
Specific recommendations include building a network of straight allies who actively promote the LGBTQ community in the BBC, based on successful initiatives at several other major employers; organizing internal campaigns supporting the LGBTQ community, and providing guidance for managers supporting transgender staff, particularly when said staff are transitioning.
The changes are meant to both support existing staff and make sure the BBC attracts the best talent internationally, while remaining relevant to younger audiences who are less likely to identify as completely heterosexual than previous generations.
The BBC says this is one of several culture and career progression initiatives looking at gender, ethnicity, disability and socio-economic diversity at the pubcaster. The org has already published action to be taken in support of women and staff with black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) backgrounds. Results of the socio-economic diversity and disability reports are due soon. These reports will all be brought together in one delivery plan to support staff across the BBC.
“We’re aiming to create the most open, inclusive culture we can,” said James Purnell, BBC director of radio and education, and a sponsor of the project, in a statement. “These recommendations reflect what our staff have said and we will now implement them to give all LGBT staff the chance to flourish.”
“We think each of the 10 recommendations have the potential to make the BBC a more inclusive workplace, giving everyone the opportunity to do their best work,” added Karen Millington and Matt Weaver, co-chairs of the BBC Pride network. “Although we hope the recommendations will positively impact everyone across the LGBTQ+ spectrum, we are particularly excited about the proposal for providing better support for our transgender colleagues and improving visibility with role models throughout the business.”