What you can do
Stonewall Scotland Workplace Conference 2015

Stonewall Scotland Workplace Conference 2015

Stonewall Scotland's conference on lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans diversity and inclusion in the workplace took place on Friday 4 December 2015 at Edinburgh International Conference Centre.

The annual Stonewall Scotland Workplace Conference in Edinburgh is a must-attend event for everyone involved in the delivery of workplace equality, diversity and inclusion. It brings together senior leaders, HR and diversity professionals, LGBT staff and allies from a huge cross-sector of organisations to share the latest innovative thinking.

Changes we made for the 2015 event (based on feedback from the 2014 event) included moving to a larger venue and developing longer, interactive breakout sessions, to allow more time for delegates to share best practice and formulate tailored action plans.


Here's what some of our delegates has to say about this year's conference speakers and breakouts sessions;

Brilliant day with varied learning.

The best and most practically useful and motivational conference I have ever been to, and I go to a LOT of conferences!

A great conference, the role models and speakers were excellent.

Always authentic and inspiring.

Loved this session! I had never considered the concept of diversity within diversity before this session. It was a real eye opener and I have many actions to take back to my organisation.

I am personally terrible at neworking....Fortunately others at the event weren't

Stonewall Scotland Workplace Conference 2015
Stonewall Scotland Workplace Conference 2015

Keynote speakers

Opening Session

Colin MacFarlane, Director, Stonewall Scotland
Ruth Hunt, CEO, Stonewall
Liz Bingham, OBE, Ambassador for Diversity and Inclusiveness, EY
Therese Proctor, People Director, Tesco Bank
Justine Smithies, Marine Electronics Engineer, Woodsons Of Aberdeen Ltd

1 to 1 Interview

Ruth Hunt, CEO, Stonewall 
Marco Biagi, Minister for Local Government and Community Empowerment, Scottish Government

Closing Session, Role Models Panel

Ruth Hunt, CEO, Stonewall 
Alanna-Jane Higginson, Editor, Gaia Magazine
Chris Creegan, Chief Executive, Scottish Commission for Learning Disability
Kirsty Colquhoun, Student, Stonewall Young Leaders Alumnus 


Opening keynote speeches

Morning breakout session 

Session 1: Empowering front line staff to deliver inclusive services

This session will offer insights on how to tailor your services to be LGBT inclusive, whilst addressing the importance of empowering frontline staff as a key element to successful service delivery.

Learning outcomes

  • How to promote your services as being LGBT inclusive
  • Overcoming the issues facing LGBT customers/service users when accessing services
  • Delivering LGBT-inclusive training to front line staff

Session 2: Exploring the relationship between faith, sexual orientation and gender identity

This session will explore how organisations can increase their understanding and relationship between faith, sexual orientation and gender identity. This session will empower employers in building harmonious teams that fully utilise the power of diversity.

Learning outcomes

  • Exploring the issues between faith, sexual orientation and gender identity
  • How organisations can raise staff awareness, facilitate constructive dialogue and promote inclusive workplaces
  • Identify how to foster good working relationships between teams

    Handout from session 

Session 3: Leading by example: Inclusive Leadership

This session is exclusively for senior members of staff and will focus on understanding their role as leaders in building an inclusive culture in their organisation. It will explore ideas such as authentic leadership theory and role models, and will give them a chance to meet and network with other senior leaders.

Learning outcomes

  • Provide a sound understanding of the strategic importance and value of inclusive leadership
  • Enhance your understanding of your role as a leader in building an inclusive culture in your organisations
  • Identify achievable ways to step up as inclusive leaders in your workplace

Session 4: Supporting trans staff: how to get it right

This session will look at specific practical steps your organisation can take to support trans staff.

Learning outcomes

  • Understanding how you can effectively support trans staff
  • Writing an effective transitioning at work policy
  • Develop an action plan to bring your transitioning at work policy to life

Session 5: Using campaigns to engage your staff 

Celebrating the power of campaigns, this session will consider how Stonewall Scotland’s No Bystanders and Rainbow Laces campaigns can be used as a tool to inspire and unite employees behind LGBT equality at work, and equip employers to develop bespoke organisational campaign strategies.

Learning outcomes

  • Gain insight into Stonewall Scotland’s campaigns for LGBT equality and best practice in using them as instruments for change
  • Consider different communication tools available in developing an effective campaign
  • How to develop an organisation-wide campaign strategy to tackle LGBT equality in your workplace

Afternoon breakout sessions

Session 6: Building effective community partnerships and fulfilling your corporate social responsibility 

This session will identify the benefits of forming community partnerships. It will explore how these partnerships can improve the efficiency of your organisation’s work towards LGBT equality and fulfil your corporate social responsibility with improved engagement with the LGBT community.

Learning outcomes

  • Identifying potential partnerships
  • Look at how to set up partnerships including identifying what you want the outcome of the partnership to be
  • How to effectively utilise partnerships to best support your organisation and the LGBT community

Session 7: The Double Glazed Glass Ceiling: Supporting LGBT Women 

This session looks at the specific barriers faced by LGBT women in the workplace, and how they can be overcome.

Learning outcomes

  • Gain insight into the specific barriers faced by LGBT women in the workplace
  • Look at practical ways to support LGBT women’s involvement in the workplace and in equality and diversity initiatives
  • Understand the importance and impact of female LGBT role models in the workplace

Session 8: Stepping up as an Ally 

Allies, who don’t identify as LGBT, have a critical role to play in creating inclusive workplaces and have been key to advancing fair treatment for their lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans staff and colleagues.

This interactive session looks at how allies can be key influencers in changing the culture of our workplaces. We will give you some of the essential tools to establish and maintain an allies programme, as well as top tips on being an effective ally.

Learning outcomes

  • Develop an understanding of what it means to be an inclusive role model and ally to LGBT people in the workplace
  • Identify achievable ways to step up as an ally to LGBT people in the workplace
  • How to overcome challenges and/or objections when implementing an allies programme, and recruiting other active allies

Session 9: Supporting your bisexual staff

This session will explore the experiences of bisexual staff, with practical tips on how you can include bisexual issues in your awareness raising activities and training.

Learning outcomes

  • Explore the distinct issues faced by bisexual people in the workplace
  • Receive practical advice based on Stonewall research and learn from best practice organisations
  • Identify ways your organisation can increase awareness and visibly support bisexual staff

Session 10: Utilising the diversity of the LGBT community in your network group 

This session looks at how to make sure your Network Group can grow and develop by representing and including the diversity of your LGBT staff. This session will offer tried and tested concepts and ideas to take back to your workplace.

Learning outcomes

  • Gain an insight into the strategies used by network groups from the public and private sector to develop a deeper understanding of the diverse needs, experiences and expertise of the wider LGBT community
  • Learn what you can do, how to empower your network group and how to engage with hard to reach or underrepresented individuals and staff groups
  • Identify achievable ways to prioritise and tackle the pertinent issues                                                                         

Stonewall Scotland Workplace Conference 2015
Stonewall Scotland Workplace Conference 2015

Stonewall Scotland Workplace Conference 2016

Stonewall Scotland Workplace Conference 2016 will take place at the Edinburgh International Conference Centre on the Friday 18 November 2016.   This event will be open for bookings in April but if you have any questions or if you would like to reserve your place now please contact cat.telford@stonewallscotland.org.uk or call 0131 474 8019.