The TUC has launched a new guide for union reps on how to combat homophobia in the workplace.

The guide, LGBT Equality at Work, provides legal tips for challenging harassment at work and practical advice on how unions can best represent their LGBT members.

LGBT Equality at Work offers guidance on a range of issues from challenging unacceptable behaviour and language to ensuring that LGBT workers who are posted to hostile countries are fully protected by their employers. There are 77 countries where being homosexual is illegal so care must be taken when posting workers abroad.

The guide is published just weeks after the British Social Attitudes Survey revealed that despite steady progress in the social acceptance of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people, a significant minority of the British population remains prejudiced.

The TUC hopes the guide will help unions to make workplaces more accepting places for LGBT workers.

TUC General Secretary Frances O’Grady said: ‘There has been enormous progress in society’s readiness to welcome LGBT people as equal fellow citizens.

‘However, many LGBT people still encounter prejudice at the workplace and it essential that homophobia is challenged where and when it happens. This guide provides a range of legal and practical advice that union reps can use to combat unacceptable behaviour and make sure LGBT staff get the respect they deserve.’