Discrimination in the work place..

  • jdsnipaz

    Posts: 41

    May 18, 2009 11:07 AM GMT
    So I finally came out to a family member recently. She conveyed her disappointment that I was gay for about an hour but then got over it. She still isn't too comfortable about my coming out, and her main issue with it has to do with my potential for having a successful career. She doesn't want to see my opportunities go down the drain because of my decision to come out. I told her not to worry about it but I do admit that she may have a point because she's older, wiser perhaps, lol. Is she right? I think it may be more of a problem if one works around kids or something like that.

    Who has experienced discrimination in the workplace and what did you do about it? Should one stay closeted in the workplace if being open may cause problems for you professionally, i.e.-seeking a promotion or landing that dream job in the first place?

    I won't be entering the work force probably until my late twenties but I would still like to know the current conditions having to do with being openly gay in the workplace.

    Thanks!
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    May 18, 2009 7:50 PM GMT
    jdsnipaz saidSo I finally came out to a family member recently. She conveyed her disappointment that I was gay for about an hour but then got over it. She still isn't too comfortable about my coming out, and her main issue with it has to do with my potential for having a successful career. She doesn't want to see my opportunities go down the drain because of my decision to come out. I told her not to worry about it but I do admit that she may have a point because she's older, wiser perhaps, lol. Is she right? I think it may be more of a problem if one works around kids or something like that.

    Who has experienced discrimination in the workplace and what did you do about it? Should one stay closeted in the workplace if being open may cause problems for you professionally, i.e.-seeking a promotion or landing that dream job in the first place?

    I won't be entering the work force probably until my late twenties but I would still like to know the current conditions having to do with being openly gay in the workplace.

    Thanks!


    If you like yourself the rest will follow.
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    May 18, 2009 7:56 PM GMT
    I think there are some states in which you can be legitimately fired for being gay.
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    May 18, 2009 8:05 PM GMT
    1st let's keep in mind - no one opens up about their sexual orientation or proclivites during or in leiu of any consideration of hire or promotion in a work place so why should you?
    Mean (at work) there is no reason for you to "declare" that you are gay, bi or straight for that matter...

    Having said that, I get that you may want to live your life and if asked want to respond "yes, I am single and would like to meet a "guy" or no I am seeing a great "guy", committed to, partnered, married to", etc...
    And you are able to do so by law - that doesn't mean you won't meet "people" who will judge you - but there are people all around us doing that in and out of the work place with regard to any hundreds of things you or I may do or like that they do not approve of right now.

    So don't sweat it and know - your rights in the work place are proteced by law and the issue is far lesser one than it was even 10 years ago.


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    May 18, 2009 8:07 PM GMT
    Bottom line in the real world is that you aren't owed a job, at, unless you're union, you work at-will, and can be fired for any reason, including the fact that someone does not like you for any reason. Performance, education, work ethic, have nothing to do with your employment status unless you work for a heavily regulated organization that receives public funds (e.g. The Post Office, or some other civil job.)

    There is NO RIGHT to a job.

    All that being said, most reasonable folks don't want to work for assholes.

    An employer has every right to say his employees can not drink, smoke, be obese, must dress a certain way, subscribe to a particular false belief system, and so on. This has been tested in the courts on many occasions.

    Companies, in general, are private organizations. Civil rights law applies. Disability law applies.

    Since the passage of disability laws, employment of folks with disabilities has actually dropped, and had a counter effect to what it was intended to do. CNN actually did a report on this a week ago.

    It appears that's also the case with some civil rights law now, and the Supreme Court will be ruling on case sometime in the next few months where all white guys, and all Latino guys, passed a civil service test (fire service, and police service), and no black guys passed it. The city, in this case, promoted no one, fearing a law suit, and has not promoted anyone for 7 years. The plaintiffs have asked the Supreme Court to declare the city as being discriminatory.

    You see the same example in our schools, and the dumbing down of the schools to the lowest common denominator.

    Sexuality SHOULD be a non-issue, and it should not be at work.

    What it gets down to is that you are not entitled to a job. An employer has every right to dictate policy, and behavior.

    I'm of the feeling this changes a bit when the organization is a government one that receives public funds, but, certainly, no employer should be forced to employ folks they don't want. This has been upheld time, and time, again.

    The best thing is to not involve sexuality in the work place. You'll also want to find an employer who is a mutual fit with your views, or, shut the fuck up. Work places are NOT democracies, nor even close.

    Do we say "is she straight?" Most of us don't. Sexuality doesn't belong in the work place.

    If you are a swishy-assed fairy, in a conservative group, an employer will regard you as disruptive, and that is enough to get you canned. You have to learn how to behave properly in certain settings.
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    May 18, 2009 8:10 PM GMT
    i would not come out at work if you've heard people make brazenly homophobic comments without getting reprimanded for it. look up your company's policy.
  • Timbales

    Posts: 13993

    May 18, 2009 8:18 PM GMT
    I had a part time job in a framing shop and was fired after my boss found out I was gay. He said he needed to lay me off because of lack of business and I was the last hired. He hired a woman a week later.

    Depending on the kind of job you have, it's something that could be a big deal or not. I've never hidden my orientation at work, but I don't announce it either. After a certain point, people get the drift when you answer the "What did you do this weekend?" question.
  • MSUBioNerd

    Posts: 1813

    May 18, 2009 8:19 PM GMT
    Laws vary from state to state whether sexual orientation or gender identity are covered by non-discrimination laws. It also remains likely that religious organizations will be allowed exemptions from many of these laws, the same way they are for sex of the employee (eg no female Catholic priests). If someone tells you it's illegal, ask whether they know what the laws are in your jurisdiction, as there is no federal prohibition on this sort of thing. It may be worth considering what the laws are of the state when you're looking for a job in the first place.

    Personally, I've never run into a problem. I almost assuredly won't, either, but that's based on my profession. There's essentially zero chance that any organization who would hire an evolutionary biologist in the first place would have a problem with my being gay. Actually, since I'll be looking primarily for an academic job, it'll be more of a question of whether, say, a public school is legally allowed to offer same-sex partner benefits, as the overwhelming majority of universities would do so if given a choice.
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    May 18, 2009 8:24 PM GMT
    Act professional at your profession. I think you know what I mean. For a really extreme example, would you bring your wife to work if you were a wife-beater? Best to keep work and private life separate.

    And why exactly are you entering the work force " in your late twenties"? What have you been doing for the last 10+ years? I probably do not want to know....icon_rolleyes.gif
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    May 18, 2009 8:28 PM GMT
    just tell 'em your not gay, it just that you used to be a woman icon_wink.gif
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    May 18, 2009 8:31 PM GMT
    Deary concerned Gay man. Your sexuality should not be an issue with your workability. Location has a lot to do with acceptance when it comes to that. There are discrimination laws to protect you should this ever be an issue. Unfortunately if you are fired because of your sexuality your boss will more then likely cover that by suggesting the firing was for another reason. My advice, there is no need to ever reveal your sexuality in the workplace.
  • jgymnast733

    Posts: 1783

    May 18, 2009 8:49 PM GMT
    The only problems i'v ever had in the work place was from other queens who were less talented..Some years ago i was a visual stylist for a dept,store[windows].. So you can only imagine the shade factor in that field..Anyway--
    Just be yourself and love yourself,,because--
    If you dont love yourself , how can anyone else...
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    May 18, 2009 8:52 PM GMT
    If you're getting into a field like business or finance, and are on a management track, such as myself, yes, I do think that there is prevalent anti-gay bias. So, you just have to really watch it, and not divulge too much information about yourself -- keep it professional.
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    May 18, 2009 11:03 PM GMT
    I think anyone can manage to keep a certain distance from coworkers. No one should ever ask you such personal questions if you don't give them such chance. Sexuality in the workplace is a taboo, even down here in Brazil.

    However, it's hard to attain certain positions on professional behavior alone. Some degree of sympathy from your superiors is a must sometimes, so you have to wonder how you are going to keep your distance while still participating in the company's parties, barbecues, happy-hour meetings, etc.
  • jdsnipaz

    Posts: 41

    May 19, 2009 1:11 AM GMT
    Luckydog76 saidAct professional at your profession. I think you know what I mean. For a really extreme example, would you bring your wife to work if you were a wife-beater? Best to keep work and private life separate.

    And why exactly are you entering the work force " in your late twenties"? What have you been doing for the last 10+ years? I probably do not want to know....icon_rolleyes.gif


    LOL

    I conduct research in a chem lab at my school. I meant to say that I won't get a REAL job until after grad school is over.

    It appears that most people who first meet me do not suspect that I'm gay and very few of the intuitive ones can suspect it; but otherwise, they just ignore the subtle signs.

    I won't go out of my way to let someone know of my orientation but I really don't feel like hiding it from someone either. I guess if someone wanted to know then I'd tell them, but then again not just anyone. There are pricks out there who are gunning for you I know. I guess I'll just go about my business, try not to draw too much attention to myself and try to be the best at what I do icon_smile.gif