…and now you should name and shame the worst !!!!!
“…and now you should name and shame the worst !!!!!”
The BBC probably
We have just closed down our joint account after homophobic comments from a manager. made a complaint and Lloyds did not even bother to answer those points.
Well, for stonewalls benefit, my Partner transitioned at Lloyds in 2000 and they were brilliant. But then, she is a Transsexual, so stonewall would be completely clueless about that, wouldn’t they.
Surely no-one takes Stonewall seriously anymore? Companies pay them money to become a ‘Diversity Champion’. Then the same company gets highly rated in their ‘Equality Index’. Fair? Not really when you understand that the companies pay 2000 pounds for this bit of Stonewall PR. Pinknews and others ought to be reporting on this.
Firstly – I don’t work for Stonewall! I do believe the scheme is beneficial, though, and have been involved at my organisation’s end of things (we’re not in the Top 100) However, in response to “Lily Savage”‘s point, companies like mine do indeed pay to become part of the “Diversity Champion” scheme. However, there are over 400 organisations in the scheme now, many not participating in the Equality Index (it’s optional) because they’re not “good enough” yet. The point of the Diversity Champion scheme is to help employers learn how to improve – and if you look at the detail of the results, you’ll see that no organisation is considered to be “perfect” – all can make improvements.
Nor have I ever worked for Stonewall. My problem with it is that the scheme is nothing like a true ranking of gay friendliness in Britain. It is more like a beauty contest where people pay to enter and Stonewall collects the admission fee in return for 100 of them selected to be ‘crowned’. There is definitely some good that comes from improving equality and diversity in the workplace but how many of the top 100 are NOT in the Diversity Champions program. ie if you don’t pay Stonewall’s fee do you really have any chance of being crowned as one of the top 100 companies? At 2000 pounds per company across 400 companies this looks a lot like a nice little (big) earner for Stonewall people. I remember when Stonewall was all about equal rights – now it looks more and more like a white collar networking and corporate PR opportunity. Sorry to rain on the good news parade so.
Lily Savage, you do make some good points. I think it’s impossible to be in the Top 100 without being a member of the scheme – but then most similar awards/rankings require payment to participate (almost any scheme you can think of). I think the visibility Stonewall has given “us” (the LGB community) is helpful, and I suspect a proportion of the £2k goes on their wider work. Having attended some of their corporate events, I know what you mean about the networking/PR (which I personally find tiresome) but I imagine it’s part of the “carrot” that gets otherwise-disinterest organisations like mine to sign up. Finally, there is certainly room for improvement in the ranking system – but if you’ve seen the HRC rankings in the States, where numerous companies are scored as 100% on LGB friendliness (a patent nonsense), I think some progress is being made here.
So here’s a radical concept – Stonewall stops charging 2k+ for organisations to champion diversity at work and makes it free for all companies (large and small) to join. If the goal is to really improve the lot of workers in UK workplaces that would do an immense amount to help. As it stands though I remain convinced that making Diversity Champions a private (and very expensive) members club to join up to primarily helps Stonewall’s bank account – no matter how worthy the work being sought to be undertaken – and does so to the detriment of gays and lesbians working in whatever sized workplace all around the UK. Will Stonewall make Diversity Champions of more companies, to help maximum numbers of UK lesbians and gay men? Or will they prefer to keep it locked up – only accessible to those organisations big enough – and willing to – pay a significantly large fee to Stonewall? I would not be holding my breath though with the greatest of respect to you Mr/Ms MHF.
I get why you’re not holding your breath, Lily Savage (I’m a Mr, by the way) I think the point you’re missing is that Stonewall being a charity and receiving little if any large-scale regular funding (not sure of the detail, but it’s not “funded”) has to pay for the half-dozen staff on their Workforce team, and many of the events and publications it produces on Workforce issues alone, regardless of its other work. I agree with the principle that membership should be free (or at least nominal cost to make it accessible to any organisation), but not sure it’s realistic for them to actually “do” anything if they do. In that case, as it stands, they’d probably need sponsorship from a few big organisations, to whom they’d risk being beholden (by which I mean, those organisations would expect to do well, far more than anyone does now).
I really want to believe you MR! MHF that you do not work for Stonewall, but your remarks seem baked in a Stonewall kitchen.
Here’s the really simple problem, however you choose to frame it.
Stonewall is very open for business with large companies.
Smaller businesses that cannot afford to pay them their 2000+ pounds admissions charge need not apply to Stonewall to become a Diversity Champion.
That really sucks for the many lesbians and gays working in small business.
Stonewall seems therefore to be about one main thing. Money. Actually, perhaps Stonewall is about a second thing – big business.
I have to take issue with the hyperlink I inserted into my name and with the Stonewall person quoted, David Shields. He says anyone is free to join the Workplace Equality Index – but when you look into it, of the private companies ranked in that index, and even the government organisations listed, almost ALL of the Stonewall Top 100 Workplace Equality Index are members of the ‘Diversity Champions’ scheme – that Stonewall charges more than 2000 pounds to enter. Looks like a PR admissions charge to me. This Stonewall scheme is a complete joke – the companies that pay them a small ransom will be likely to rate highest. How disgusting! Gays an lesbians rights at work: ‘Who cares?’, apparently.