Accepting Homosexuality in the work place and in the Union

‘’Homosexuality is the sexual and/or romantic attraction of a person of their own gender”

Some are natural born homosexuals, and others grew up in a community being dominated by one gender which they end up adopting the other lifestyle in order for them to survive.

How can one tell if the other person is a homosexual, or bisexual in closet? There are many men out there who are enjoying to do what turns up to be total opposite of what most men would do. Like men who likes to wear women clothing and underwear. Do we have a right to judge them?

A large portion people who identify as homosexual have had a history of being sexual violence, mostly by their own family members or neighbours when they were still young. They do not report these incidents because of fear or maybe because feeling ashamed of what had happened to them. Up to 5 out of every 10 homosexual people are said to have been rape victims. Raped not once or twice but many occasions, by same person or by multiple people who chose to feast their sexual ambitions by forcing themselves onto the vulnerable.

They feel less of a man/ woman because of this thing that had happened to them, some will end up enjoying what was done to them without their permission. Then they see no need to change their situation and end up living homosexual life, hence others will still be attracted to the opposite sex which ends up turning them into bisexuals.

Homosexual people are also often exploited for their desires as our communities judge them harshly. Leading to many to be blackmailed in order to keep their homosexuality secret. Is there anything wrong with people who are homosexual, is there any abnormality in their lives? There is nothing wrong with homosexual people, in fact they are normal people and deserve respect and dignity.

How can we best treat them at our working places in an environment that is dominated by men and women who are straight, does our companies cater for their needs and privacy, toilets facilities and change rooms?. For sure they won’t feel comfortable sharing change rooms and bath rooms with other straight workers, even those who are straight won’t feel comfortable.

What about shop stewards who are homosexual, would they share rooms during congresses, or we would book them separately simply they are homosexual? We need to look at this matter very closely as these people sometimes feel rejected by the society. As the union we need to start debates in our Gender substructures from the local levels to national around homosexuality in the workplace and in the union.

We need to be the ones changing mentality of other people around homosexuality and discrimination.

Written by: Sthembiso Owen Nzimande