Interview of Georgie Court, Graduate recruitment specialist at Clifford Chance in London, for #biweek
Queer. To me queer is an umbrella term that means 'something other than heterosexual' and that definitely best represents me. My sexuality is fluid and changes regularly so Queer is a good title to encompass all that.
I wasn’t out at university, but I have always been out in the workplace. I've never felt a lack of inclusion. However, it’s the small things that sometimes stand out. For example, when colleagues automatically assume that you are dating someone of the opposite sex when they ask about your partner.
My coming out was super easy – I was honest about being pansexual/bi-sexual way before I started dating a girl.
I am still new at Clifford Chance but my role will be to help give a more female-focused approach and perspective to some of the initiatives we do! As commonly seen, the LGBT+ community at the firm seems to be quite well represented by the G but not as much by the L or the B and I would like to try and improve this!
I think with bi people there is always a real feeling around lack of identity and community. This is because if your partner is someone of the same sex, people assume you are gay and if you are dating someone of the opposite sex, people assume you are straight. I would say to all bi people that they are enough and they are valid. I don’t believe in pressuring or encouraging people to come out if they aren’t ready, but I would say to them to try and at least be honest with themselves.
BiVisibility day is important! Role models are important! And most importantly straight AND gay people should definitely try and make a conscious effort to think twice before they make assumptions.
How do you think Clifford Chance is achieving this? With 57% of young people citing themselves as 'something other than heterosexual', not including LGBT+ people in our workplaces just isn’t an option anymore. We are everywhere – if companies and firms aren’t trying hard to create LGBT+ friendly policies and safe workspaces, they will lose us and miss out on some of the best talents out there!
Clifford Chance are taking some great steps forward to make sure LGBT+ young people know that they would be welcomed at a career in the business. For example, this year we are running our first ever ACCEPT conference – an opportunity for LGBT students interested in a career in law to hear from senior role models and understand why it's important to bring your full and authentic self to work each day.
Whatever the gender of the partner I am with; they have always been incredibly supportive of my bisexuality and encouraged me to be myself, in and out of the workplace.