Not STRAIGHT forward for homosexuals: A look at the lived experiences of homosexual men, living in Cape Town, with regard to their worker roles.
Soeker, Mogammad Shaheed
de Vos, Z.
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The South African constitution protects the rights of gays; however in the workplace gays experience discrimination and marginalization. As a result of marginalization they struggle to reach their potential regarding career development and the fulfilment of their worker role. Objective: The study explored the experiences and perceptions of gay males with regard to acquiring and maintaining their worker roles. The study is phenomenological and qualitative in design. Eleven of these men participated in two focus groups. One male participated in two in-depth interviews and one interview was conducted with a key informant. Three themes emerged: 1)Being boxed in, 2) The glass ceiling, 3) This is where I can wear my feather boa. The study findings clearly depicted the many barriers experienced by homosexual men and how this negatively impacts on their worker role. Minimal facilitatory factors exist, to assist gay males in regard to their worker role. It was found that homo-prejudice still exists in South Africa and its workplaces and has a negative impact not only on gay men's worker role but also their well-being. This significantly highlights the great need for occupational therapy intervention in the lives of these gay men, and their workplaces.