Study: Majority of American workers embrace their LGBTQ colleagues

Study: Majority of American Workers Embrace Their LGBTQ Colleagues

American workers appear more ready and willing than at any other time to embrace their LGBTQ colleagues and co-workers, according to a study by the PR firm Bospar.

The survey of 2,000 adults just released by the San Francisco-based firm for the 50th anniversary of Pride Month found that 60% of Americans have no preference about with whom they work. Last year Bospar reported that percentage at 55%. 

What’s more, an overwhelming majority of Americans (83%) believe that LGBTQ equality can and will be achieved in the workplace.

When asked how, the top reasons cited included: more LGBTQ colleagues in the workplace; more workplace education about LGBTQ issues; younger professionals joining the workforce; and more employees being open about their sexual orientation.

Another finding from the study: 68% of Americans think equality for their LGBTQ colleagues is improving.

Challenges ahead

However, the study’s authors point out, there are still challenges to overcome:

  • Nearly a third of Americans say they have been harassed at work due to their sexuality.
  • Over a third of Americans disagree with the transgender military ban.
  • About half the population (48%) say Chick-Fil-A’s donation to anti-LGBTQ organizations doesn’t matter.
  • Just under one in three Americans (29%) agree with Alabama Public Television’s decision to ban an episode of the children’s cartoon “Arthur” which featured a gay wedding; 41% thought the ban was the wrong thing to do.
  • A majority of Americans (77%) believe that LGBTQ topics should be taught in schools. Middle school was the most popular choice (25%), followed by high school (21%) and K-6th grade (19%).

Americans had an overwhelmingly favorite communicator of LGBTQ equality in 2019 – Ellen DeGeneres.

LGBTQ Top 10

Ellen DeGeneres 

Lady Gaga 

Neil Patrick Harris 

RuPaul

George Takei 

Madonna 

Ariana Grande 

Pete Buttigieg 

Cher 

Tim Cook 

 “Right now, several factors are contributing to what is a watershed moment in workplace social dynamics,” said Gabrielle Ayala, a principal of marketing and research firm Propeller Insights, which conducted the survey from May 24-31. 

 “The inclusion of high-profile LGBTQ personalities in mainstream media, especially those that transcend that label like an Ellen DeGeneres, goes a long way in breaking down those stigmas that lead to discrimination and prejudice,” Ayala said.

“Combined with a social movement like #MeToo, the focus is shifting away from what people do in their personal lives to how people conduct themselves at the office.”

“Curtis Sparrer, a principal of Bospar PR, said the results are  “a further sign of progress that the people Americans named as the top communicators of LGBTQ equality include entertainers, straight allies, business leaders, and politicians.”

“That said, we have challenges to overcome. When it comes to equality, I think baseball legend Yogi Berra said it best: ‘It ain’t over till it’s over.’”

Rich Henson
Rich Henson, a member of the HRMorning staff, has spent the past two decades developing potent HR and Management content that helps guide successful leaders forward with confidence. He is a former editor and reporter with The Philadelphia Inquirer. Email: rhenson@hrmorning.com