Why? Because they can come out, which makes them feel more secure in their position. Zack Ford at ThinkProgress found some fascinating numbers in the study, detailing that LGBT employees who are able to come out at work are incredibly valuable employees:
- DESIRABLE WORK FORCE: As a group, LGBT employees are the kind of workers employers should want:
- 71 percent are “ambitious.”
- 88 percent are “committed” and “willing to go the extra mile for employers.”
- 48 percent have graduate degrees (compared to 40 percent of their straight counterparts).
- CLOSET IS STIFLING: Of those in the closet:
- 52 percent feel stalled in their careers (compared to only 36 percent of those out).
- Only 48 percent feel satisfied with their rate of advancement (compared to 64 percent of those out). They are significantly less likely to achieve senior management positions.
- They are 73 percent more likely to say they’ll leave their companies within the next three years.
- They are 75 percent more likely to feel isolated at work; even moreso if they are men.
- They are more likely to perceive the work environment as hostile and 40 percent less likely to trust their employer.
- MONEY TO BE LOST: Studies show the LGBT community’s collective buying power in the U.S. is over $700 billion.
Not only is equality in the workplace an important progressive ideal, then, but just plain smart business. So why, then, does the state of Tennessee (and many others) go to extra lengths to preserve Biblical principles in their business models? It's not only a waste of personnel but also a waste of money.