​Being gay in the UK could affect your pay, study suggests

​Being gay in the UK could affect your pay, study suggests
How much you are paid in the UK is not merely defined by the gender pay gap. It could also be based on your sexual orientation.

That’s according to researchers, who say that lesbians in the UK are likely to earn up to 8 percent more than their straight counterparts. Gay men, however, are liable to earn around 5 percent less than heterosexual men.

The study was commissioned by the World Bank and the IZA World of Labor Project, and carried out by Anglia Ruskin university economist Dr Nick Drydakis.

The striking pattern is reflected internationally. In Germany, gay men are expected to be paid around 9 percent less than straight men, while in the US, they earn 16 percent less on average.

“The higher salaries among lesbians in some countries may reflect discrimination in favor of masculine traits rather than against them,” Dr Drydakis said.

“In addition, lesbians tend to self-select into male-dominated occupations that may offer higher salaries.”

As there are few studies that measure sexual orientation as a factor in the labor market, he claimed it was difficult to chart the impact it had on overall employment in the economy.

The report also indicates Australia, Canada, the US and the EU have the strongest protection measures in regard to sexual orientation rights, which are codified in formal anti-discrimination laws.

Despite this, gay people are generally discriminated against in favor of heterosexual applicants with comparable skills during the hiring process.

The report comes in light of efforts by Stonewall, a LGBTQ rights group, to encourage workplaces in the UK to provide gay and lesbian staff with employment safeguards. So far, more than 800 major employers have adopted Stonewall’s index as a model for good practice.

Despite this, the World Bank estimates around 2.7 billion people live in countries where being gay or lesbian is a crime.