LGBT Issues in Higher Ed: Creating a More

LGBT Issues in Higher Education:
Creating a More Inclusive Environment
Shane Snowdon, M.A.
Founding Director, Center for LGBT Health & Equity,
University of California, San Francisco;
Director, Health & Aging Program, Human Rights Campaign Foundation
Suzanne Goldberg, J.D.
Director, Center for Gender & Sexuality Law;
Herbert and Doris Wechsler Clinical Professor of Law, Columbia University
Moderator: Kuheli Dutt, Ph.D.
Assistant Director, Academic Affairs & Diversity,
Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, Columbia University
June 3, 2014
MNYSC-HERC Diversity Conference 2014, New York
Challenges Facing LGBT Employees
All available at
Challenges Facing LGBT Employees
• Joking, judgments, ostracism, harassment
• Lower compensation, worse assignments,
less advancement
• Less mentoring & fewer role models
• Bias & lack of outreach in recruitment/hiring
• Lack of institutional protections & support
• Unequal benefits & policies
A Closer Look at LGBT Workplace Challenges
Available at
A Closer Look at LGBT Workplace Challenges
• To be or not to be . . . out
– 53% are not out at work
– 35% have lied about their personal lives at work
– 33% are distracted by negative work environment
– 20% are “exhausted” from hiding at work
• Feeling unwelcome
– 20% have looked for another job because of this
– 10% have left a job
How Can Your School
Extend a Welcome?
Challenges Facing LGBT Students
• Navigating outness (especially with faculty &
in athletics, fraternities, first-year residences)
• Finding friends & partners
• Finding role models & handling networking
• Limited or no family support
• Feeling unsure about career & family prospects
• First-year concerns:
“Will I be welcome, safe & supported?”
LGBT Youth: A Snapshot
LGBT youth (13-17) as a group experience more:
Drug use
Recent HRC Surveys Go Into Detail . . .
Visit to peruse or download
findings from 10,000 youth nationwide
Quick Glimpses of School-Related Findings
Quick Glimpses of School-Related Findings
“Biggest problems” for LGBT students:
non-acceptance by family, bullying at school, fear of being out
“Biggest problems” for non-LGBT students:
trouble with class, exams, grades
Quick Glimpses of School-Related Findings
The Good News
How Can Your School
Fulfill This Hope?
Institutional Equity for LGBT People on
• Nondiscrimination policy with both
“sexual orientation” & “gender identity”
• Clear complaint process, with regular
• Inclusion of LGBT people in diversity efforts
– Leadership statements
– Diversity plans
– Webpages
– Holiday commemorations
Equity & Support for LGBT Staff & Faculty
• Assurance that same-sex spouses will be
treated just like different-sex spouses
• Health coverage for domestic partners
• Health coverage for transgender needs
• Equal domestic partner retirement benefits,
FMLA, COBRA, discounts, housing, etc.
• LGBT training for HR, chairs, managers,
search committee members & others
Equity & Support for LGBT Staff & Faculty
• Recruitment & hiring inclusion
– Targeted outreach
– LGBT nondiscrimination tagline
– LGBT-inclusive employment info
• LGBT-inclusive employee climate survey
• LGBT faculty & staff focus groups
• LGBT employee resource group
Expanding the Circle (
Equity & Support for LGBT Students
• Inclusion in admissions events & materials
• LGBT training for admissions, counseling,
housing, other student affairs staff, leadership,
faculty, residence staff & others
• LGBT-inclusive student survey
• Creation of an LGBT office/center, which will
provide a WIDE range of services & programs
Higher Ed LGBT Professionals (
Campus Pride (
Campus Pride (
Transgender Employees & Students
• Include “gender identity” in nondiscrimination
policy & train EEO/complaint staff
• Provide health insurance coverage
• Be prepared to support transitions
– Training, both proactive & reactive
– Designated HR/student affairs point-person
– Records changes: email, ID, payroll/academic
– Unchallenged bathroom access
Campus Pride (
Climate Recommendations (
LGBT Issues: A Law and Policy Perspective
LGBT Legal Landscape: Title IX and legal protections
based on sexual orientation and gender identity
related to education, employment and hate crimes
LGBT Issues from a Law and Policy Perspective
1. Anti-LGBT Harassment and Violence
From the Department of Education’s April 2014 guidance:
Does Title IX protect all students from sexual violence?
Answer: Yes. Title IX protects all students at recipient
institutions from sex discrimination, including sexual
violence. Any student can experience sexual violence:
from elementary to professional school students; male and
female students; straight, gay, lesbian, bisexual and
transgender students; part-time and full-time students;
students with and without disabilities; and students of
different races and national origins
LGBT Issues from a Law and Policy Perspective
2. In the classroom:
• Hostile comments by teachers/students;
• Refusals by students to participate in LGBT-related
3. Participation in student organizations and issues
related to inclusion
4. Athletic programs:
• Locker rooms;
• Coach conduct;
• Transgender students
A Selection of Resources on LGBT Issues in Higher
The Legal Landscape
For maps showing legal protections based on sexual
orientation and gender identity related to education,
employment, and hate crimes throughout the United States:
Anti-LGBT Harassment and Violence:
For extended discussion of Title IX’s gender misconduct rules:
A Selection of Resources on LGBT Issues in Higher
Athletic Programs
For extended discussion and recommendations of best
practices, see the It Takes a Team project:
For discussion of policies related to transgender athletes in
particular, see On the Team: Equal Opportunity for Transgender
Student Athletes:
A Selection of Resources on LGBT Issues in Higher
In the classroom and on campus
Because the law is evolving quickly, there are relatively few
that are fully up to date. One that addresses a number of issues
related to sexual orientation is Mitchell and Eckes, Sexual
Orientation and the College Campus, 254 Education Law
reporter 19 (2010).
Suzanne Goldberg
[email protected]
To access the slides for this presentation please see:
(provided in info packet)
Thank You!

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