The UK government has issued new guidance for businesses on how to support transgender employees and customers.
Minister for Women and Equalities Nicky Morgan today announced the publication of two documents – ‘The recruitment and retention of transgender staff’, and ‘Providing services for transgender customers‘
The guides give a number of tips to businesses aimed at helping them recruit and support trans employees – as well as how to cater for trans customers.
The employers’ guide contains suggestions – from not forcing a choice between ‘male’ and ‘female’ on application forms, to making sure that trans people are able to use their preferred bathroom.
The guidance, which was developed alongside employers including Asda, Sainsbury’s, McDonalds and the Metropolitan Police, also tells businesses they are missing out if they do not have a diverse workforce.
It explains: “We are all different. Our different backgrounds, experience and perspectives mean we think about issues in different ways, see new solutions and opportunities to improve. The opportunity to think differently means we can do things differently.
“If barriers exist to the recruitment and retention of transgender staff, employers miss out on this potential.”
Meanwhile, businesses are advised that adopting trans-inclusive customer policies will “reduce the number of complaints, and even in some cases, legal action” that can be sparked around trans issues.
The guidance adds: “Services are generally better when they are designed to take account of different people’s needs.
“If you set the atmosphere and culture by treating the inclusion of transgender people as ‘business as usual’ and nothing remarkable, it will help others to follow. In other words, be mindful of issues that can arise, but don’t expect there to be problems.
“Treating transgender service-users well is cost effective in terms of reputation and business, but also it will reduce the number of complaints, and even in some cases, legal action.”
Nicky Morgan MP said: “This government is committed to ensuring that everyone can fulfil their potential, including transgender and non-binary people.