Bury Council has again been named one of Britain’s top ‘equal’ employers by professional lobbying group Stonewall.
The council is now listed at number 60 in Stonewall’s Top 100 Employers list which showcases the progress being made in many workplaces towards full equality for Britain’s lesbian, gay and bisexual employees.
Bury has been in Stonewall’s list since 2009, and for the second year running is the only council in the North West to make the Top 100.
The annual audit, now in its 12th year, is free to any employer to enter and this year more than 400 employers took part. To supplement evidence submitted by employers, Stonewall also sought feedback directly from staff, and received 60,506 responses.
Councillor Sandra Walmsley, Bury’s cabinet member for resource and regulation, said: “We are delighted to be included once more by Stonewall in its Top 100 list of ‘gay friendly’ employers in 2016. We are committed to eradicating discrimination in all areas, and we are glad to see that our efforts are being recognised nationally.
“Stonewall has previously recognised the council’s LGBT Employee Group as a Star Performer Network Group. This acknowledges the role of individual employees who participate in the network group, often in their own time, to help make sure the bosses 'get it right' for their staff.”
The council was praised for its “exceptional” commitment to creating and maintaining an all-inclusive workplace for all staff, at a time when resources are increasingly scarce.
Its LGBT group was a driving force behind a range of activities and issues, from health inequality and training to anti-bullying and transgender policy. Senior members of staff were visible champions of LGBT equality, as were staff on its Equality Allies programme. Rainbow flags were flown at the town hall on International Day Against Homophobia.
Ruth Hunt, chief executive of Stonewall, said: “Bury Council and all of those employers that secured a place in the Stonewall Top 100 Employers 2016 list performed fantastically this year. We have had more submissions than ever before and so making the list is a huge achievement. I’d like to thank all of those organisations for their continued efforts to ensure that their lesbian, gay, bi and trans staff feel comfortable to bring their whole selves to work and are accepted without exception.”
Press release issued: 20 January 2016.