Driving forward with our commitment to LGBT+ inclusion

As the UK marks Pride season, here on campus we continue to drive forward with our commitment to LGBT+ inclusion.

Professor Gill Valentine, Provost and Deputy Vice-Chancellor and Senior LGBT+ Champion, said: “I’m passionate about developing an inclusive work environment where everyone can flourish.

“Pride is about taking a positive stance against discrimination towards LGBT+ people as well as celebrating their identity. It is a time to recognise how far the LGBT+ community has come and to reflect on how we still need collective action to foster openness, increase understanding and share responsibility to continue to progress LGBT+ equality.

“At the University we have been at the forefront of many innovative initiatives to enable LGBT+ staff and students to reach their full potential. I am keen to continue the progress of this work as I recognise there is still more to be done. Thank you to everyone here committed to helping us build an LGBT+ inclusive workplace."

Professor Gill Valentine

Help build an inclusive workplace

We all have a role to play in helping build an LGBT+ inclusive workplace. One way to do this is to help us identify where we are doing well and the areas where we need to do more work. You can do this via the annual Stonewall survey.

Take the Stonewall survey

The survey takes less than five minutes to complete and is open to all staff. The information you provide is entirely anonymous. Use the University Organisation Code: 1699.

Our key LGBT+ inclusion work

Our LGBT+ staff and student networks continue to work closely with the University to make sure that this is a safe and inclusive place to work and study. This work includes developing LGBT+ inclusive resources, training, policies, and awareness campaigns.

And it’s thanks to the hard work and commitment of many colleagues and students in helping us build an LGBT+ inclusive workplace that earlier this year we were recognised as a Stonewall Top 100 employer for the sixth year running.

Top Trans-Inclusive Employer 2019

Earlier this year we were also recognised as a Stonewall Top Trans-Inclusive Employer for our commitment to trans inclusion. We know we still have work to do and are continuing to make this a key focus area over the coming year. Continuous reviews of our policies and systems to update our language is one way in which we work towards LGBT+ inclusion. We have worked with colleagues to review and update our Transgender Guiding Principles and will continue to engage with stakeholders and progress this work moving forward. Our E-Learning course Trans Awareness is available to all staff through MOLE.

Additionally over the past 18 months, Gendered Intelligence have run face-to-face trans equality training for over 130 staff to provide guidance on transgender terminology and language, and the legal and work-related issues that our trans colleagues may face. This work is crucial for incorporating trans inclusion into every day practice. 

Our Gender Equality Committee now has representation from staff with expertise on transgender issues. This committee aims to raise awareness and offer support to the University in progressing gender equality, acting as a body of expertise in this area. Broadening committee membership to include expertise on transgender issues is key in helping the University to consider trans inclusion as part of this work.

Useful resource: Stonewall Trans Q&A

LGBT+ banner

Sarah Shahid

Bi-visibility – representing our community

Sarah Shahid, from the English Language Teaching Centre is a Bi representative on the LGBT+ Staff Network. She described what it means to be Bi and to work at the University. “I know I am safe to be Bi at the University. I feel supported and valued, with the freedom to be me and can work without having to worry about phobic comments.”

Bi is an umbrella term used to describe a romantic and/or sexual orientation towards more than one gender. Stonewall has a number of resources focusing on Bi-visibility and Bi representation to help build a Bi inclusive workplace through improvement in policy, terminology and profile raising.

I know I am safe to be Bi at the University. I feel supported and valued, with the freedom to be me and can work without having to worry about phobic comments.


Useful resource: Stonewall Bi Inclusion in the Workplace

Our LGBT+ allies programme

Our LGBT+ allies programme, Open@TUOS, now has 2,500 supporters. It aims to empower all staff to help create an open, inclusive environment for LGBT+ colleagues and students at the University, by sharing information, encouraging people to become actively involved in LGBT+ activities and by asking staff to visibly support LGBT+ inclusion.

Join Open@TUOS

Dates for your diary:


Date: Saturday 13 July 2019
Time: 11am – 7pm

We are sponsoring PinkNic, Sheffield’s annual LGBT+ city centre event, held at the Peace Gardens. Our LGBT+ staff network will be there with a stall. Drop in or come along with a picnic and enjoy the family friendly entertainment with live music and stalls.

PinkNic also offers us the opportunity, on an annual basis, to support local organisations who may otherwise be unable to attend. We work closely with the organisers to help us to identify local groups or charities that would benefit most from our support. This year Pinknic have helped us to arrange for a local trans group and bi group to have their own stalls.

The event is free to attend and open to all. Booking not required.


South Yorkshire LGBT+ Domestic Abuse Conference

Date: Wednesday 17 July 2019
Time: 9am – 2pm

The Diamond, Lecture Theatre 5

Sheffield based Charity, SAYiT, invite you to attend the launch of Call it Out - the South Yorkshire LGBT+ Domestic Abuse Conference, introduced by Provost and Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Professor Gill Valentine.

The event is organised by colleagues in the Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health and includes a panel discussion featuring Dr Michaela Rogers, Senior Lecturer in Social Work.

The discussion focuses on exploring barriers preventing LGBT+ people accessing services and support for domestic abuse.

Places are limited - please book before 5pm, Friday 5 July 2019 by emailing info@sayit.org.uk