An Overview of the LGBTQ Workforce in the US

In recent years, more and more companies are aware of the importance of building an inclusive culture at workplaces by modifying their policies, values and offering benefits for LGBTQ employees. Not only are these actions creating a safe environment for employees, but they also generate substantial benefits including generating innovative solutions based on creativity from different perspectives and increased employee engagement and satisfaction.

Visa, CIA, Uber, Google, IBM and much more are great examples of companies that are demonstrating their true commitment to LGBTQ equality. Despite this progress, we believe there is still more that can be done.

LGBTQ employees face different kinds of barriers at work such as the lack of knowledge and awareness regarding the LGBTQ community, discriminatory behaviours as well as the exclusion from important relationships inside and outside the organization.

Actually, the Supreme Court of the United States ruled yesterday that workers across the US cannot be fired for being gay or transgender. Prior to the ruling, in the United States there was no federal law protecting employees from discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity. Moreover, in 28 of the 50 US states there was no state-level protection for sexual orientation or gender identity.

Today we have created this special blog post to commemorate Pride Month and we encourage all professionals to keep embracing diversity and inclusion at workplaces.


LGBTQ Employees in the US

  • 20% have experienced discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity when applying for jobs.
  • 22% have not been paid equally or promoted at the same rate as their peers

LGBTQ Employees and Hostility at Workplaces

  • 53% report hearing jokes about lesbian or gay people at least once in a while.
  • 1-in-5 reports having been told or had coworkers imply that they should dress in a more feminine or masculine manner.


LGBTQ Employee Mindset in the Workplace

  • 31% say they have felt unhappy or depressed at work.
  • 46% say they are closeted at work.
  • 20% felt that they were passed over for job opportunities.
  • 45% agree with the statement that enforcement of the non-discrimination policy is dependent on their supervisor’s own feelings towards people who belong to the LGBTQ community.


At Kwema, we are proud to support diversity in all its expressions. In addition to building safer communities, we believe that a safe workplace is where employees feel free of being themselves and valued for their talents.

Watch how Kwema is disrupting workplace safety



Catalyst (2020). Quick Take: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Workplace Issues

Catalyst (2009). BUILDING LGBT-INCLUSIVE WORKPLACES. Engaging Organizations and Individuals in Change

Human Rights Campaign. (2019). A Workplace Divided: Understanding the Climate for LGBTQ Workers Nationwide


Photo by Joshua Stitt on Unsplash
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