DERBYSHIRE: County council is a top place to work for gay, lesbian and bisexual employees

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National campaign group Stonewall has ranked Derbyshire County Council as one of the best places to work for lesbian, gay and bisexual employees.

The council features in this year’s ‘Top 100 Employers’ list ranking 74 out of 376 public and private sector entrants.

And Derbyshire, which employs 36,000 staff, is ranked as the fourth best county council employer and one of only 18 local authorities to make the list this year.

Derbyshire County Council chief executive Nick Hodgson said: “We’re proud to be recognised by Stonewall as one of the UK’s leading employers for lesbian, gay and bisexual employees.

“We believe we’ve made significant progress in creating a working environment where colleagues can feel comfortable about being open about their sexual orientation if they choose and where our diversity can improve the services we provide.

“It’s a tremendous achievement and this national recognition demonstrates how we value our employees and are committed to being an excellent employer.”

Stonewall works with employers to promote equality for lesbian, gay and bisexual employees and publishes an employers’ performance index every year.

It measures how successful organisations are in providing confidence, support and security for lesbian, gay and bisexual employees to be open about their sexuality at work.

This is done by assessing employers across eight areas of good practice including training and development, monitoring, employee policies and how they work with their lesbian, gay and bisexual community.

The county council will continue as a Stonewall Diversity Champion this year – a programme designed to support organisations that are committed to improving as an employer. It offers one-to-one support, performance monitoring and opportunities to share good practice with successful high-profile employers.

Mr Hodgson added: “We’re always committed to improving further and are pleased to continue as a Stonewall Diversity Champion to support our work to build on this year’s success.”

The county council supports and promotes its own LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender) Workers’ Group and is holding an event to mark LGBT History Month at County Hall in Matlock on Friday 8 February.