Should a part of your identity be disclosed in the workplace? No one seems to question heterosexuality but the moment there is someone who is homosexual the atmosphere seems to change. Being gay in the workplace is a difficult situation to be in because you have to decide whether or not disclosing a part of your identity is worth it. Will I lose my job? Who you disclose that information to can be a selective process.
Do those who are homosexual choose to hide a part of their identity and act “heterosexual”? Do they have to change their mannerisms, and their attire and remain “professional” by looking and acting the part? If they choose to hide their sexuality then companies are taking away from their identity, ripping away their creativity and individuality.
Let us consider those individuals who are of color and homosexual. What problems do we foresee them having? They can choose to not disclose their sexual identity but they can not hide the fact that they are a person of color. So, regardless they are discriminated against. Depending on the state they live in there are no laws protecting the Queer community. Being a person of color and homosexual can be double the discrimination.
For example, African-American athlete, Michael Sam, has been a big topic because he recently came out before the NFL draft. Its been a big controversy over his sexuality. Football has been known to be a heterosexual mans sport. Now that we have the first gay man to come out openly it has been one of the hottest topics in Sport Center. There should not be a controversy over his sexual identity but open dialogue about his skills and talents as a football player. Our President gives support to Michael Sam about announcing his sexuality.
In the article, “Gay men at work: (Re)constructing the self as professional” by Nick Rumens and Deborah Kerfoot share their research about Queer people in the United Kingdom who choose to disclose their sexual identity in “gay friendly” organization and the repercussions of doing so.
Written By: Jessica Ramirez, Student Leader, Communication Studies Major
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