Examples of workplace discrimination based on sexual orientation 

On Behalf of | Feb 18, 2023 | Sexual Orientation/Transgender Rights |

No one should have to experience harassment or discrimination at work as a result of their sexual orientation. Despite the progress and advancements made in recent years to both laws and social awareness of those employees who are not heterosexual, the unfortunate situation is that discrimination does still happen. 

It’s not always clear when something constitutes discrimination. Below are some examples of how a person’s sexual orientation can be used against them in the workplace. 

Jokes and uncomfortable comments

It’s incredibly uncomfortable to feel like you have to laugh along when you’re the subject of a joke you don’t find funny. 

One form of sexual orientation discrimination is being subjected to comments or jokes aimed at your sexuality or the sexuality of others. This can also take the form of inappropriate questions or remarks as well as threats and insults. 

Different treatment than heterosexual employees

There are many ways an employer can treat employees differently based on their sexual orientation. This can be in the form of failure to put a gay employee forward for promotion or training. It can also be found where an employer treats two employees differently in the same scenario and the only differentiating factor is their sexual orientation. 

One example of this may be when it comes to allowing leave for certain life events such as weddings and childbirth. If an employer lets a heterosexual employee have time off to spend with their partner after the birth of their child but fails to do the same for an employee in a gay or lesbian relationship, this may be due to discrimination. 

If you’ve experienced discrimination based on your sexual orientation, you shouldn’t have to put up with it. There are rights that protect you and can be used to take action against your employer. 

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