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п»їHomophobia at work: what to do if you suffer discrimination
Work is the place where you spend a good part of your day, in most cases a minimum of eight hours. It has to be a space in which you feel comfortable, safe and in which you can show yourself as you are without that supposes any type of problem with the environment that surrounds you. Your companeros are, in many cases, a second family. You spend a lot of time with them, and although it is not always possible to be friends with all of them, it is advisable to have a friendly relationship. For your sake and theirs.
But that is not always easy, and you do not have to be the one guilty of that situation. There are occasions in which the companeros, or the bosses, are not the most minimally friendly and end up leaving out certain people because of their sex, religion or origin.
Homophobia is a terrible practice in any environment
We are going to talk about labor discrimination due to a sexual condition, when someone is being misled because they are not straight. Homophobia affects a homosexual, but also anyone in the LGTBI collective (Lesbians, Gays, Transsexuals, Bisexuals and Intersexuals) and does not distinguish between men and women between their victims and their promoters.
When work ceases to be safe Homophobia is a terrible practice in any environment, but remember that work is a supposedly safe space in which you spend many hours and that depends on your employment and your economic support. Hence, in spaces as familiar as this or the center of studies is even more brutal and harmful for those who suffer any type of aggression.
In the work this translates into alleged jokes that hide what is homophobia, in damaging and derogatory comments or in giving side to a homosexual person in conversations or when organizing some kind of activity. What that entails is that you do not feel part of the group and isolate yourself to avoid continuing to suffer.
Discrimination can affect the sufferer in various affections. To begin with, you can have him withdraw, do not relate to other people at work. In addition, it can undermine your self-esteem, even producing a depression, not to mention that it will affect your work performance because you will not be focused on the job.
The rejection of the different ones, those who are not like you has always existed. Throughout history men and women have been discriminated by the color of their skin, by their origin, by their way of speaking ... The reasons for those who do less than someone are very varied and, of course, Sexual orientation is one of them. Hence, many people do not openly declare homosexual or LGBTI, for fear of being sidelined or, what is worse, to be harassed.
Nowadays the exits of the closet are very frequent, fortunately, but many are still finding that once this threshold is passed, acceptance by other people is not easy. The situation reaches such a point that they can endanger something as fundamental as its use. And there are sectors in which things are even more complicated, those that have always been considered typical of "men", such as those related to production or security.
60% report discrimination at work Work is one of the places where LGTBI people suffer the most discrimination. There are studies that suggest that 60% of them suffer from it and half of them prefer not to reveal their sexual orientation when seeking or joining a job.
Discrimination can cause a person to withdraw and not relate to people
That does not prevent them from feeling discriminated when their work colleagues make derogatory comments towards the LGTBI collective or jokes at their expense. Humor supports almost everything, but there are certain things that have no place, especially when someone directly involved does not like the subject.
What to do in that situation? It is not easy to proceed when you feel that men or women marginalize you for being homosexual or that you have an idea of вЂ‹вЂ‹distorted LGTBI and that may end up undermining you. You can make your self-confidence go down and you do not even feel like going to work, which obviously affects your work performance. And that should not be the case.
Confront the companeros To avoid it or to stop that behavior on the part of the companeros the first thing would be to face them with a calm attitude. Openly talk about your sexual identity and say what types of attitudes you do not like and offend and expect them to give up on them. Occasionally, the circumstance that men and women discriminate against others may not be fully aware of the harm they did or did not believe that "it was so bad" and when they saw it change their behavior.
If not, things may even get worse. Given this possibility, the first step would be to speak with the managers of the company to inform them of what is happening and that they are in charge of solving the matter. Not in vain, discrimination is not allowed in the work environment and homophobia can end up in crimes, apart from the fact that it is a practice that most companies aspire to eradicate.
The person who suffers discrimination is the victim and society should protect it
Make public the cases of homophobia That is why it becomes important to highlight the discrimination towards the LGTBI collective and the best way to do this is to publicly denounce the cases of homophobia. If it is something that can be classified as a crime, look for a lawyer and study the possibilities that there is to file a lawsuit. LGTBI associations have experience in these things and can lend a hand.
It is also important to make it known to society and in that sense social networks are a tool that reaches virtually everyone and that we have at our disposal. A post talking about a case of homophobia can scandalize enough people so that those responsible for your company take action in this regard. But we also warn you that they are open to everyone and you can find more unpleasant comments than those of the companeros who discriminate against you.
The last measure that you would have left, if the previous thing has not worked and the situation at work is unsustainable, would be to leave it and look for another job, but it is not fair. The person who suffers discrimination is the victim and what society should do is protect it. In addition, when you have suffered homophobia in the office you may end up thinking that it will happen in other similar positions, which will negatively affect your self-esteem and your job expectations.
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