Counted In is the third in a series of Stonewall Cymru All Wales Lesbian, Gay and Bisexual surveys commissioned by the Welsh Assembly Government.
The surveys have been undertaken to record the experiences of the Lesbian, Gay and Bisexual people on crime, employment, media, health, education and social, cultural and economic inclusion in Wales.
The results are used to assess the needs of Lesbian, Gay and Bisexual people in Wales and in turn to inform the development of Welsh Assembly Government policies.
At the launch the Minister set out progress in promoting equality particularly for lesbian, gay and bisexual people.
Most importantly is the commitment to publish a Single Equality Scheme next year designed to ensure that promotion of equality, including sexual orientation becomes a key feature of policy development.
The Welsh Assembly Government also fully supports the introduction of a criminal offence of incitement to homophobic hatred is included in the new Criminal Justice and Immigration Bill.
The Inclusion Project, run by the Welsh Assembly Government, assists small and medium sized businesses in Wales to develop good equality and diversity practices.
Help is also available to owners of small businesses to raise awareness of the business benefits of employing a wide and diverse range of people. This includes employing the best person for the job and disregarding irrelevant social characteristics. Part of the work includes helping employers understand that someone’s sexual orientation does not effect how capable they are in doing a job.
In response to a call for equality and diversity training in the NHS the Welsh Assembly Government is also developing a guidance for healthcare staff in Wales, informing them of sexual orientation equality legislation. It will contain information on some of the issues that members of the Lesbian, Gay and Bisexual community may face, have faced or believe they will face.
The Welsh Assembly Government is also a Stonewall Diversity Champion, a forum established by Stonewall in 2001, in which employers can work with Stonewall to promote diversity in the workplace. Diversity Champions brings together employers who are at the cutting edge of delivering diversity in business and public service and focuses on the new challenges and opportunities for employers addressing issues of diversity in the workplace.
Brian Gibbons said:
I welcome the findings of this survey, the findings provide a valuable insight into the way in which Lesbian, gay and Bisexual people perceive they are being treated.
It is an important building block in our close relationship with Stonewall Cymru, working together it helps us identify where we can make a real difference in improving the lives of Lesbian, Gay and Bisexual people in Wales. I hope we can continue to work together to push forward the recommendations.
Notes to editors
The report is available on the Stonewall Cymru website at www.stonewallcymru.org
26 November 2007