Response stories

A dream job almost lost due to LGBT-related stigma

An ordinary guy at first glance, Oleh has had a passion for photography since childhood, so turning a hobby into a profession in his adult life to become a photographer seemed like a logical step to take. One day he found out that a local TV channel was looking for a cameraman. Inspired and driven to use his talents and energies for the good of his hometown, the man decided to try his luck in getting the job. The first stages of the job interview process went great, and Oleh felt “in his element.” However, at the end of the interview process, conversation shifted to his photos posted on social networks showing him with his “boyfriend” during the Kyiv Pride march. The potential employer stressed that Oleh’s open support for and affiliation with the LGBT community might ruin his chances of securing his dream job. 

The man did not know what to do: Should he delete all physical evidence linking him to the LGBT community, even though that felt like self-betrayal and giving up on his own identity? Or should he bite the bullet and put on a mask to disguise his intrinsic nature in order to land his dream job or should he refuse to betray himself and just walk away? The client took his dilemma to REAct.

As part of the REAct monitoring system, the client was linked to legal and psychological assistance. His consultation with the legal counsel confirmed Oleg’s suspicions that there was no legal basis for the demands the potential employer was making, while the session with the psychologist helped him, to use his own words, develop a plan for communication with the employer, which was aimed at safeguarding the values important for the client and standing up for his right to be himself.

The employer ended up accepting Oleh’s rationale after Oleh had laid out his reasons and arguments, and took him on a trial period prior to permanent employment. Thus, thanks to the assistance from REAct employees, the client secured the desired job and stayed true to his life principles.