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Harassment is a serious issue in academia — including the sciences — that negatively impacts climate, retention, and productivity. Anyone can experience workplace harassment but some individuals, such as those who identify as LGBT+ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, as well as other sexual and gender minorities), are more vulnerable.
The American Physical Society's Ad Hoc Committee on LGBT+ Issues (C-LGBT), formed in 2014, is charged to:
Advise the APS on the current status of LGBT+ issues in physics, provide recommendations for greater inclusion, and engage physicists in laying the foundation for a more inclusive physics community. More specifically, the committee will investigate LGBT+ representation in physics, assess the educational and professional climate in physics, recommend changes in policies and practices that impact LGBT+ physicists, and address other issues that affect inclusion.
The C-LGBT obtained information through focus groups held at APS meetings, a detailed climate survey, and a set of in-depth interviews with individuals who self-identify as LGBT+.
In June 2019, the Institute of Physics (IOP), The Royal Astronomical Society, and The Royal Society of Chemistry released a new report: Exploring the Workplace for LGBT+ Physical Scientists. Using the 2014 LGBT+ Climate in Physics report as its basis, Exploring the Workplace sets out a framework of action to improve workplace cultures so that LGBT+ scientists are comfortable and working in an environment free from discrimination and harrassment.
For more information on the IOP report’s key findings and a link to the full report, see below:
In the report, C-LGBT included a resource guide for LGBT+ and other issues that includes LGBT+ support and advocacy groups in physics and astronomy, LGBT+ support in the wider STEM community, other diversity organizations in physics and astronomy, academic readings, media resources, and social media resources.
LGBT+ Climate in Physics
LGBT+ Climate in Physics Press Conference