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LGBTQ & Non-Binary Individuals

When LGBTQ individuals are able to bring their true authentic selves to the workplace, they are more productive, have greater job satisfaction and commitment and stay in those jobs longer helping to save the company money. It is important to be well versed in language surrounding the LGBTQ Community, in order to create an inclusive environment. For a full list of proper terms and definitions, browse the New York Times’ ABCs of L.G.B.T.Q.I.A.+.

U.S. & Global Stats  |  Iowa Stats  |  Benefits of Hiring LGBTQ  |  Attracting & Retaining Talent  |  Additional Resources

U.S. & Global Stats

  • 4.5% of the U.S. adult population identify as LGBTQ.
  • 1.5% of all couple-households in the U.S. are same-sex couple-households.
  • 20% of LGBTQ Americans have experienced discrimination when applying for jobs.
  • 34% of LGBTQ Americans report that they or a friend have been verbally harassed while using the restroom.
  • LGBTQ people of color (32%) are more likely to experience this type of discrimination than white LGBTQ people (13%).
  • 22% of LGBTQ Americans have not been paid equally or promoted at the same rate as their peers.
  • Nearly one in 10 LGBTQ employees have left a job because the environment was unwelcoming.

Iowa Stats

  • In Iowa, 3.6% of people identify as LGBTQ.
  • Iowa ranks as 39th in the nation for individuals who identify as LGBTQ.
  • The average age of LGBTQ Iowans is 38.1 years old compared to an average age of 48.5 years old for non-LGBTQ Iowans.
  • 27% of LGBTQ Iowans have children.
  • 20% of LGBTQ Iowans are non-white, and 56% identify as female.
  • 26% of LGBTQ Iowans have incomes less than $24,000 annually.
  • LGBTQ Iowans experience unemployment at 6% compared to Iowa’s total unemployment rate of 2.4%.
  • LGBTQ Iowans are also twice as likely to be food insecure (22%) when compared to non-LGBTQ Iowans (11%).

Source: UCLA Williams Institute

Benefits of Hiring LGBTQ

  • LGBTQ-inclusive cities are more globally competitive as evidence shows they have stronger “innovation ecosystems,” greater concentrations of skills and talent and better quality of life.
  • 72% of allies are more likely to accept a job at a company that supports LGBTQ rights.
  • LGBTQ-inclusive workplaces are more likely to attract and retain top talent, retain a loyal consumer base and drive innovation.
  • 84% of LGBTQ and ally employees are proud to work for a LGBTQ-inclusive employer, as opposed to 68% who work for a non-inclusive employer.
  • 84% of LGBTQ and ally employees “go the extra mile” to ensure their company’s success versus 73% who work for non-LGBTQ-inclusive employers.
  • Teams that include members who represent the target demographic are up to 158% more likely to understand that target.
  • 56% of leaders don’t value ideas they don’t personally see a need for, reinforcing the idea that diversity in leadership drives innovation.

Attracting & Retaining Talent

  • Create LGBTQ-supportive policies — williamsinstitute.law.ucla.edu
  • Use LGBTQ-friendly messaging in job postings and recruiter communications — business.tutsplus.com
  • Develop and sustain a well-run inclusion program that offers workshops, training and support from both management and HR, with the goal of creating an inclusive environment — peoplescout.com
  • Collaborate with outside LGBTQ organizations and charities and encourage all employees to participate in events sponsored by these organizations — everyaction.com

Additional Resources

  • Des Moines Pride Center: facebook.com/dsmpridecenter – The Des Moines Pride Center is a community organization that serves, supports and celebrates gender and sexual minorities and their allies.
  • First Friday Breakfast Club: ffbciowa.org – FFBC works to eliminate prejudice and discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. We seek to achieve this through discussion forums and media designed to educate ourselves, opinion leaders and the general public.
  • Iowa Safe Schools: iowasafeschools.org – The mission of Iowa Safe Schools is to provide safe, supportive and nurturing learning environments and communities for LGBTQ and allied youth through education, outreach, advocacy and victim services.
  • One Iowa: oneiowa.org – This organization advances, empowers and improves the lives of LGBTQ Iowans statewide.
  • GLAAD: glaad.org – GLAAD rewrites the script for LGBTQ acceptance. As a dynamic media force, GLAAD tackles tough issues to shape the narrative and provoke dialogue that leads to cultural change.
  • National Center for Transgender Equality: nctequality.org – The National Center for Transgender Equality advocates to change policies and society to increase understanding and acceptance of transgender people. In the nation’s capital and throughout the country, NCTE works to replace disrespect, discrimination and violence with empathy, opportunity and justice.
  • The National LGBTQ Taskforce: thetaskforce.org – The taskforce is the country’s oldest national LGBTQ advocacy group. They strive for more than equality and to transform society.