11 February 2014Time: 1:00 - 2:00pm
Venue: FB 4.27a, 4th Floor Bancroft Building, Mile End Campus, E1 4NS
Emir Ozeren, PhD Candidate, University of Rome “Tor Vergata”
Sexual orientation equality at work within the context of Turkey
Today’s workforce is becoming more diverse in terms of gender, ethnicity, and religion as well as in sexual orientation. Sexual orientation remains the –so called “last acceptable and remaining prejudice”- in modern societies and organizations in comparison with other dimensions of diversity. Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender (LGBT) employees constitute one of the largest, but least studied minority groups in the workforce and they face a variety of challenges that range from being forced to remain closeted to actual job dismissal.
Despite the civil rights movement, equality legislation, a number of regulations and protective measures (such as Employment Equality Regulations based on sexual orientation in 2003) in UK, LGBT employees, ‘de facto’ continue to face subtle forms of discrimination including verbal and homophobic harassment, jokes, and disparagement that include homosexual content. In addition, inequality in wages, hiring processes and career disadvantages continue to occur. On the other side, sexual orientation discrimination at work in Turkey continues to lag far behind the goals of the second research wave agenda pursued by the UK. Discrimination at work in Turkey has been generally discussed in terms of gender and predominantly religious aspect of diversity while a more elaborate approach towards discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation has been absent. Ironically, despite the introduction of a number of legal clauses related to gender discrimination (e.g. positive discrimination of women vis-a- vis male) and very recently religious diversity in the workplace (allowing women to wear head scarf at work in all public professions excluding army, police, judiciary), there has been no specific law or regulation within Turkish constitution and legal system to protect sexual minorities from sexual orientation discrimination at work. As an emerging country and a candidate nation to EU, Turkey displays a very unique set of gendered intersectionalities permeating the employment sphere that deserves further academic attention.
Emir Ozeren is currently a PhD candidate in Management at University of Rome “Tor Vergata”. He holds BA degree in Business Administration as his core major from Dokuz Eylul University, Izmir where he also did double major in International Relations. He continued his master studies in the same university and received MA degree on Management and Organization in 2011 with the thesis titled as “The Relationship between Cultural Tightness–Looseness and Organizational Innovativeness: A Comparative Research into the Turkish and Italian Marble Industries”. He became an exchange student in University of Pisa under Erasmus scheme and carried out research regarding his master thesis in Italy. His current research interest focuses on sexual orientation equality at work within the context of Turkey. He has recently published a review paper on sexual orientation discrimination in the workplace. He has also several other publications, conference papers and a book chapter in the field of organizational culture, entrepreneurial marketing and marketing online education.
* Lunch from 12:30pm in the kitchen