The Importance of Unions for the LGBT Community

Contest entry

They told me that "it just wasn't working out;" that "it would be best if we went our separate ways."  They claimed that my personal life had nothing to do with their decision to let me go.  

Oh, how I used to wish that my incompetence had been the reason for my employment termination. I would have known then that my actions had been the reason for my failure; something that I could have changed for my next job. However, the issue was not with my work capabilities, but rather with the fact that I am gay.   

Finding a stable job with minimal harassment in my hometown was next to impossible.  When I finally got a job, the manager quickly took to disliking me. She felt that I was repulsive and did not deserve fair treatment. She did not dare insult me to my face, but her actions spoke loud enough.  My paycheque suffered from this, but I was in no position to challenge my employer's power over me. I was expendable. So, I shut my mouth in an effort to save my position.  As you can tell, it didn't work.

That was seven years ago. I'm now a part of a company that sees my potential and views me as an equal. I joined a union once I was hired so that I would not have to worry about the past repeating itself. I finally have stability in my profession, and my salary, rights, and integrity are protected as well.

Unions matter for the LGBT community, as they ensure that our rights are protected in the workplace.  With the support of my union, I have come to the realization that being gay does not decrease my value as a human being, or as a member of the workforce.

Carly McFall