Hidden Costs Of Hidden Homophobia Workshop

Hidden Homophobia Hurts Everyone

The Opportunity

With the advent of gay marriage and the prevalence of queer and gender-diverse characters onscreen, there has never been a time of greater societal acceptance or visibility for gays, lesbians, and the rainbow of sexual and gender minorities contained within the 2SLGBTQIA family. Today, organizations prize 2SLGBTQIA employees and recognize their community as a highly desirable multi-billion dollar market (SIS International Research).

The Challenge

But that visibility and acceptance has come at a cost. Hate crimes in Canada against sexual minorities were up 41% in 2019 over 2018 (Statistics Canada). Hate crimes in the UK against sexual minorities doubled over the past four years (UK Home Office). And the number of anti-2SLGBTQIA hate groups in the US increased 43% in 2020, while more than 320 anti-LGBTQ bills have been introduced in state legislatures over the past year (Human Rights Campaign).

Within this complex environment, many organizations are seeking to raise awareness internally and foster necessary change to ensure their sexually and gender-diverse employees and customers feel properly welcomed, valued, and respected.

Our Offering

Hidden Costs Of Hidden Homophobia offers an inclusive, mutually supportive workshop leading to increased individual and organizational awareness using tools to help everyone involved navigate and embrace this constructive change. Participants are helped to understand homophobia and recognize hidden bias. And they are empowered to break free of stereotypical emotional and behavioural straightjackets that may be undermining critical relationships inside and outside the organization, stifling creativity, and limiting collaboration and innovation — all of which are key to organizational vibrancy.


Offered as a half-day or full-day workshop, participants learn to recognize the homophobia within the dominant culture in which we’ve all been raised, and looks at its symptoms — gay jokes, slurs, toxic masculinity, bullying, hazing, and gay-bashing. We have all heard of these things and far too many people have experienced them. They are symptoms of a toxic culture. 

Hidden Costs Of Hidden Homophobia begins with a broad environmental scan to place homophobia within a global context and works from there inward toward the personal, creating a safe and supportive space for participants to consider their own awareness of and experience with homophobia. The goal is to help people let go of any hidden bias that may be holding them back.

Participants are then encouraged to imagine how that newly gained individual awareness and understanding can help transform and revitalize the organization, creating deeper levels of trust, understanding, and compassion that can foster greater harmony, help unleash creativity, and empower more meaningful and deeper engagement with peers and customers alike.


If culture is the wellspring of organizational success, then ridding your culture of the toxic effects of hidden homophobia can supercharge your organization's ability to live up to its values, achieve its mission, and realize its vision. Understanding the Hidden Costs Of Hidden Homophobia can help you revolutionize behaviours, enhance relationships, and improve attitudes by collectively embracing values that emphasize caring, empathy, expression, communication, and creativity.


Sean Bickerton has been an advocate for gay rights since first coming out in 1977. He served as President of Gays and Lesbians of UBC in the early 1980s during the AIDS crisis, helping create and deliver some of the very first safe-sex campaigns in Vancouver. During that time GLUBC teams visited UBC classrooms and gay nightclubs to speak out about AIDS, encourage safe-sex practices, and distribute condoms.

Recognizing a gap in the current Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion efforts of many organizations, he created the Hidden Costs Of Hidden Homophobia Workshop in 2022.

Free 30-minute Zoom consultation available on request.