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Council named as one of the best employers for LGBT+ rights

PUBLISHED: 17:19 30 January 2019

Tower Hamlets Council is named as one of the top LGBT+ employers by Stonewall. Pic: LBTH

Tower Hamlets Council is named as one of the top LGBT+ employers by Stonewall. Pic: LBTH

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Tower Hamlets Council has been named as one of the best employers in England for LGBT+ rights.

The town hall is the third highest ranking local authority in London, and the 13th highest in the country according to a list compiled by LGBT campaign group Stonewall.

Overall, Tower Hamlets rated 121st place out of 445 employers from all sectors of society that entered the ‘Stonewall index’ whose criteria is to judge ‘great work over the past year to help achieve acceptance without exception for all LGBT people.’

In the last year the council has introduced a range of measures to support and promote the rights of LGBT+ staff and residents including:

• Putting LGBT+ rights at the heart of the council with the creation of a new corporate equalities board including LGBT+ spotlight sessions to ensure LGBT+ issues are given high priority.

• Re-establishing an enhanced LGBT+ staff forum providing support, advice as well as positive events and activities for LGBT+ staff and their supporters.

• Leading the way across the capital and promoting positive networking opportunities and the sharing of best practice by establishing a pan-London LGBT+ staff forum.

• Active engagement with the Local Government Association’s (LGA) Equality Framework, ensuring the council meets the highest national equalities standards including those relating to LGBT+ policies and protections.

Will Tuckley, chief executive of Tower Hamlets, said: “Our diversity is our greatest strength and respect is one of the council’s core values.

“We have a proud history of tackling inequality in the borough and welcoming communities from all backgrounds. There is more to do but I’m pleased we have ranked well compared to other local authorities.”

The council is also currently commissioning a number of local LGBT+ organisations to provide a programme of public events and activities for LGBT+ month which starts this Friday.

Cllr Asma Begum, deputy mayor and cabinet member for community safety and equalities, added: “As a council we want to ensure that our commitment to equalities is demonstrated as much by our deeds as by our words.

“Tat’s why we welcome the fact that the index rating is just part of an ongoing working relationship, and we look forward to meeting with Stonewall next month to take forward a shared action plan that puts LGBT+ policies at the heart of what we do.”

Now in its 15th year, the list celebrates the pioneering efforts of leading organisations to create inclusive workplaces.

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