Are Gay Men Offered Fewer Jobs?

A new study suggests being out could have consequences

Photo by Think Stock

Harvard University asked – and employers told. According to a new study in the American Journal of Sociology, gay men are less likely to be called back for job interviews than their straight counterparts – 40 percent less. A researcher at Harvard sent two, very realistic (but fictitious), resumes to almost 2,000 corporate job openings – and the response was somewhat surprising.

According to Pink News, one resume listed relevant experience in a gay organization, while another boasted experience in a progressive, socialist alliance. And while employers were “turned off” by the left-leaning view points in general, more resumes without a gay reference point received call backs. And those that mentioned homosexual affiliations were less likely, says the study, to be contacted at all.

“The results indicate that gay men encounter significant barriers in the hiring process because, at the initial point of contact, employers more readily disqualify openly gay applicants,” the study says, “than equally qualified heterosexual applicants.”

The researchers also determined that men exhibiting less stereotypically heterosexual qualities were also discriminated against more often. And region played a role, as well. The study found that states in the South and Midwest (like Ohio or Texas) showed the most significant adversity to mentions of gay life on a resume. But in places like Pennsylvania, New York and California, there were minimal differences.

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