Employment support for LGBTQIA+ staff

We’re committed to and support inclusion and diversity.

We want people of all sexual orientations and gender identities to thrive in our workforce. This includes people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex and of all diverse sexual orientations and gender expressions and identities (LGBTQIA+).

Inclusion and diversity

Our Workplace Inclusion and Diversity Strategy 2019–23 demonstrates our commitment to inclusion.

We know that having an inclusive and diverse workforce makes us better at providing quality services and support for our customers. We’re a Gold Tier Employer in the Australian Workplace Equality Index. We’re one of the only Australian Government agencies to hold this status.

We’ve achieved this through:

  • inclusive HR policies
  • equal benefits for same-sex couples
  • access to paid and unpaid leave for transgender and gender diverse staff to affirm their gender
  • LGBTQIA+ inclusive employee resources
  • an LGBTQIA+ Ally program
  • celebrating days of significance for LGBTQIA+ staff
  • an active membership with Pride in Diversity and more.

Our recruitment process

We recruit staff by merit. This means we look at:

  • your skills, abilities and experience
  • how well you fit the requirements of the job
  • how you compare to other applicants.

We’ll treat you fairly and without discrimination throughout the recruitment process and your employment.

If you want to find out more about a position, you can talk with the position’s contact officer.

To find out more about our inclusive recruitment processes, you can email our Inclusion and Diversity Team. This will be confidential.

Let us know if you have any concerns about the process, including:

  • submitting your application
  • providing identity documents
  • attending a job interview, assessment centre or medical assessment.

Read more about workplace diversity and inclusion.

Our LGBTQIA+ staff network

The Rainbow Connection is our LGBTQIA+ staff network. It’s open to all LGBTQIA+ staff and allies. It helps us shape the way we practise inclusion and allows staff to:

  • connect and support each other
  • give advice
  • get advice
  • share knowledge and life experiences.

Our LGBTQIA+ Allies

Many of our staff are LGBTQIA+ Allies. An ally is a friend and active supporter of the LGBTQIA+ community. Allies can be non-LGBTQIA+ as well as people within the LGBTQIA+ community who support each other.

We also have 2 Senior Executive LGBTQIA+ Allies who make LGBTQIA+ inclusion visible in our workplace by:

  • raising awareness and showing how to be inclusive
  • celebrating LGBTQIA+ days of significance
  • representing the needs of LGBTQIA+ staff across the organisation and wider Australian Public Service.

The Rainbow Roundtable connects the Senior Executive LGBTQIA+ Allies with members of Rainbow Connection and the Workforce Capability Division. It’s an opportunity for 2-way communication to:

  • understand the workplace culture, the experiences of staff and the impact of inclusion initiatives
  • inform initiatives that are aligned to our Inclusion and Diversity strategy and action plan
  • develop a yearly plan of activities to increase the inclusion of LGBTQIA+ staff
  • implement the plan of activities and report on progress.

Our policies

Same sex couples can access the same partner and child related leave as other staff. This includes access to all of the following:

  • carers leave
  • compassionate leave
  • supporting partner leave
  • parental leave.

Parental leave includes leave for all of the following:

  • birth
  • adoption
  • fostering
  • surrogacy.

Transgender and gender diverse staff can access paid and unpaid leave to affirm their gender.

We actively encourage staff to express the gender identity they are comfortable with. This includes their choice of business clothes and access to the facilities they feel comfortable using.

Our training and support programs

We have programs and services in place to ensure our workplace is culturally safe and inclusive. This includes LGBTQIA+ training and resources.

All staff have access to support services through our Employee Assistance Program provider, TELUS Health. Qualified counsellors provide help to all staff, including LGBTQIA+ staff, with their mental health. Family and friends can also get help.

Staff can also access online training and support resources.

Our support for transgender and gender diverse staff

We appreciate there are many ways of experiencing and expressing gender identity such as being:

  • transgender
  • gender diverse
  • gender fluid.

Staff of all gender identities know they are welcome in our workplaces through visible signs of support, including:

  • policies to ensure transgender and gender diverse staff have fair access to leave for themselves and their families
  • access to surrogacy leave for staff who become parents using legal surrogacy
  • choice to wear business clothes that express gender identity
  • choice to use the building facilities staff are comfortable with
  • paid and unpaid leave for staff who undertake gender affirmation
  • access to a supportive community through the Rainbow Connection
  • 2-way communication through the Rainbow Roundtable.

Awards and recognition

In 2024 we’ve been recognised as a Gold Tier Employer for the third time.

The AWEI sets the benchmark for LGBTQIA+ workplace inclusion nationally. It provides valuable feedback on areas of strength and improvement for LGBTQIA+ inclusion in the workplace.

Page last updated: 19 June 2024.
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