Current Affairs

Gay MP backs Out At Work campaign

PinkNews Staff Writer February 21, 2007
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Angela Eagle, the only openly lesbian member of parliament, has joined with trade union leaders to call for action on LGBT people’s rights at work.

Unionlearn and TUC Education launched Out At Work, a new workbook which makes legal rights within the workplace clear, yesterday.

It is designed to promote equality and inclusion among the UK’s workforce.

Ms Eagle, the Labour MP for Wallasey, said: “This is a practical and useful document. This will be a major step forward in assisting unions to better represent LGBT members at work.

“This will give them the confidence and knowledge to turn policy into practice, and I’m delighted to support it.”

The workbook outlines a range of strategies to help union reps and others to assist LGBT members, understand the language around gay issues, and be clear about negotiating for LGBT members.

It also provides vital information about rights at work, harassment and bullying as well as a number of useful case studies.

Brendan Barber, general secretary of the Trades Union Congress, said:

“Through lobbying and influencing government, the TUC has had considerable influence on a range of equalities legislation over the years and we are very active in lobbying and campaigning on LGBT issues.

“This workbook will play a vital role in promoting understanding of LGBT issues in workplaces.”

Over 15,000 union representatives will receive a copy of the workbook during the summer term and will be trained in its use.

Ms Eagle, who is also the vice-chair of the Labour Party, has been a strong opponent to any exemptions or changes in the Sexual Orientation Regulations, which are due to be published this week.

The regulations criminalise discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation when accessing goods and services.

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