14 January 2015

Council rated most gay-friendly in the country

Brighton & Hove City Council has been rated the most gay-friendly local authority in the country by pressure group Stonewall in its Top 100 list of employers for 2015.

Stonewall took into account a wide variety of examples of the council’s work around LGB issues. These include:

  • a Dignity and Respect at Work Policy that clearly sets out how employees can raise any concerns they may have about bullying or harassment in the workplace
  • a 365-day confidential staff help and advice service to provide employees with access to trained counsellors
  • e-learning in equality and diversity issues that all managers have to take
  • coordinating massive national and international media coverage showing our support for the introduction of same sex weddings
  • support for activities around LGBT History Month and the International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia.

The council’s lead member for LGBT issues, Councillor Phélim Mac Cafferty, said: “As LGBT champion I’ve been adamant about our council’s commitment to equality and our role in the country to provide strong leadership on equality.

“We are the top council and the twelfth most LGB-friendly employer in the country and I’m thrilled that our work has once again been recognised by Stonewall.

“I want to thank all of our staff who have helped us to get here. As top council we want to send out a clear and important message to our staff and to our residents that we take equality very seriously.

“We are working hard to make the council a caring and supportive place to work and we must never underestimate that we can make a real difference to people’s lives. Harvey Milk once said: ‘Hope will never be silent’, and today we provide hope to the LGBT community.

“Today’s announcement sits alongside our excellent work on equality for the trans community. We are the top council in the country for combating homophobia in the classroom, so along with our cutting edge work, we are adamant that equality for our LGBT citizens is of the utmost importance. There is still much work to do.”