Few CEOs and senior executives will be unaware of the various initiatives and targets to increase diversity at board level and senior management. Early this year the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills1 announced a new independent review on increasing the representation of women in corporate leadership positions. Similarly, there is an increased awareness of the need to address ethnicity in leadership roles. Whilst ethnic minority board members lag behind their female counterparts, efforts are being made by many companies to redress the white, male bias.
Just think of the positive impact an out gay man in the Premier League could have, not just in helping young football supporters struggling with their own sexuality, but in gaining LGBT allies among straight fans. Let's hope that Gazidis will be proven correct in his prediction sooner rather than later, and that we won't have to wait five whole years.
These seemingly small things slowly chip away at your self identity and self esteem. They undermine your identity, making you out to be not a "real" man/woman. They shake the foundations of who you are. Some off the cuff un-thought-of comments haven't just upset me but have made me questions my choices and the way I identify.
Some people might label these events as 'one offs', and decide it's not worth 'making a fuss' by reacting. But in fact, this editing is the lesbian, gay, bi and trans community's response to structural oppression and discrimination (something that all marginalised communities have to deal with on a daily basis.)
The fact that trans people have to refer to themselves as 'wrong' or describe themselves as having a birth defect in order to gain acceptance makes me extremely uncomfortable. It puts the problem on trans bodies instead of focusing on power structures and the hierarchy established in our society that marginalises and medicalises certain types of bodies.
October 11th marks National Coming Out Day (NCOD), a significant date in the ever-growing LGBT calendar of awareness events. The day does what it says on the tin, aiming to celebrate and draw attention to the experience of coming out which has become a 'rite of passage' for many (but not all) LGBT people.