In June of 1969, a riot broke out. A group of gay customers at a bar in Greenwich Village called the Stonewall Inn, had become angry because of the way the police have been treating them. As word spread throughout the city, the customers of the Inn were joined by other gay men and women. They shouted, “gay power” and started throwing things at the police. The next night, over 1,000 people showed up to protest outside of the Stonewall Inn. A year after this had happened, the first gay pride parades in U.S. history took place in Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco, and near the Stonewall Inn in New York. That is how the LGBTQA movement began. The LGBTQA community continues to increase with time, furthermore, the effects are widespread including globally, locally, on college campuses, and in the workplace.
LGBTQA people face discrimination and human right abuse in every country of the world. It ranges from loss of jobs and housing to even violence. According to glaad.org, “Approximately 80 countries still criminalize LGBTQA relationships in some way, and many other types of laws deny even the most basic rights and dignity to LGBTQA and intersex people.” In the last 50 years, many countries have moved from criminalizing homosexual behavior to some discrimination, to some protection against sexual orientation discrimination, to some recognition in same-sex marriages. Meanwhile, a few countries have introduced new or harsher prohibitions. Diversity around that world is immeasurable.
Students face a number of social and personal issues when they categorize themselves with the LGBTQA community. Administrator, staff, faculty, and students are unaware of what the LGBTQA community faces. In an Emmanuel College Social Psychology course, students are asked to break a social norm and note how others react to them. Several students reported that others laughed at them or looked at them strangely. The study states, “This simple exercise effectively illustrates the power of the social group to influence our feelings about ourselves, and our subsequent behavior. Moving around in society involves a careful balance between expressing our individuality and meeting the expectations of those around us” (Transgender Realities, 63). “As an educational community, it is the duty of its members to create a safe and supportive environment for everyone. Seeing the relevance of gender in all its forms and across disciplines is one way to raise awareness and broaden people’s perspectives on the complexity of living in a gendered society.”
A report from Williams Institute at UCLA School of Law states that people in the LGBTQA community continue to report discrimination and harassment in the workplace. The evidence has been documented over the past forty years in both the private and public sectors. This report also summarizes research showing the negative impacts of discrimination against LGBTQA people in terms of health, wages, job opportunities, productivity in the workplace and job satisfaction. “Although sexual orientation and gender identity have no relationship to workplace performance, during the past four decades a large body of research using a variety of methodologies has consistently documented high levels of discrimination against lesbians, gay men, bisexuals and transgender (LGBT) people at work.” (Citation). Research shows that as of 2011, 78% of the respondents to the largest survey of transgender people to date reported experiencing at least one form of harassment or mistreatment at work because of their gender identity. 47% had been discriminated against in hiring, promotion, or job retention. Twelve studies in the past ten years stated that gay males are paid less than heterosexual males with the same qualifications. “While no detailed wage and income analyses of the transgender population have been conducted to date, six non-probability surveys of the transgender population conducted between 1999 and 2005 found that 6%-60% of respondents reported being unemployed, and 22%-64% of the employed population earned less than $25,000 per year. Transgender respondents to a 2011 national survey were unemployed at twice the rate of the general population, and 15% reported a household income of under $10,000 per year.” (Citation) The evidence found in this study proves that the LGBTQA discrimination is in fact evident in the workplace.
The LGBTQA community continues to increase with time, furhtermore, the effects are widespread including globally, locally, on college campuses, and in the workplace.