BENGALURU: Marking the first anniversary of the dilution of Section 377 by the Supreme Court, a not-for-profit organisation, Community Business, released on Thursday a guide for workplace inclusion for LGBT+ individuals. The guide, titled ‘LGBT+ Workplace Inclusion in India: The Definitive Guide’, focuses on the issues that lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender communities face in work environments in India, and provides recommendations for employers.
Speaking on the occasion, Bharatnatyam exponent Navtaj Singh Johar said, “I don’t think Indians are homophobic. We are known for plurality and we just need to respect people the way they are.”
The consensus on Thursday was that the repeal of Section 377 was just the start. Chandrasekaran Doraiswamy, a long-time employee of Capgemini, stressed on the importance of out-leadership. “Marriage is like paracetamol, it is often prescribed for every problem in our society. Coming out was almost a relief, it takes this pressure off, I was able to do this at work because of the kind of work environment we had. When more people are courageous, it inspires courage,” he said. Aritra Kanjilal from Neilson talked of the importance of developing a network and inspiring young people. “One person can’t lead the entire movement. It is important to develop a network of people from the LGBT+ community and allies to realise the changes we want to see,” he said.
Vijaya K Matt, country head, Community Business, pointed out that companies can play an important role as Indian society comes to terms with a new era of acceptance towards sexual minorities. “By creating an LGBT+ inclusive workplace, companies can create a ripple effect,” Matt added.
Kampurath, co-leader, Dell Pride ERG India, added, “We hope this guide serves as a critical tool for India’s corporates to maximise the LGBT+ talent pool, which will ultimately strengthen businesses.”