BP to Target Gays and Lesbians in Staff Drive

By Behar, Darren | Daily Mail (London), June 21, 2002 | Go to article overview

BP to Target Gays and Lesbians in Staff Drive


Behar, Darren, Daily Mail (London)


Byline: DARREN BEHAR

PETROL firm BP is to actively recruit homosexuals and lesbians as it tries to lose it's 'golf club culture'.

Britain's biggest company also wants to add more women and foreign nationals to its staff.

Chief executive Lord Browne said the firm was determined to end its traditional methods, which it believes encourage only white Anglo-Saxon men.

He outlined the strategy at a Women in Leadership conference in Berlin.

The 54-year- old bachelor, who until recently lived with his mother, hopes the company will attract gay and lesbian staff in Britain and the U.S. by offering equal benefits for partners in same-sex relationships.

This ensures that the traditional offer to spouses of pension rights, death benefits and relocation allowances are extended to gay partners.

The aim, he said, was to recruit the best staff regardless of other factors.

He added: 'If we can recruit a disproportionate share of the most talented people in the world, we will hold a competitive edge.

'That is the simple logic behind our commitment to diversity and to the inclusion of individuals regardless of background, religion, ethnic origin, nationality or sexual orientation.

' We want to employ the best people, everywhere, on the single criterion of merit.' The purpose was to end the 'golf club culture' that can exclude women and minorities and which reflects badly on the company.

BP, which employs 110,000 people worldwide, rebranded itself two years ago as 'beyond petroleum' to underline its growing commitment to renewable fuels.

It already has women as heads of shipping and group security in the Middle East, both positions that in the past would have been regarded as exclusively men's work.

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