An independent network focused on building a safe and inclusive future for LGBTIQ+ people in the property and construction industry is changing attitudes, “one rainbow at a time”.
Founded in 2019 in Melbourne, Queers in Property (QIP) is an independent network for LGBTIQ+ people, with an emphasis on visibility, empowerment and professional support.
Led by a board of ten energetic and committed “queerleaders”, QIP was founded in response to a misalignment between the level of openness and acceptance in the industry and available “out at work” research.
Since its inception QIP has been committed to supporting members who find it difficult to be open about their same-sex attraction or gender diversity for fear it might negatively impact their career prospects and professional development, or worse, make them a target for bullying and harassment.
Newly-appointed board member Marcus Skeggs of development presentation platform company Displaysweet is on a mission to ensure that everyone, no matter how they identify, can feel safe in their workplace to be themselves.
“I’m thrilled and excited to be appointed to the board of Queers in Property and use my voice to promote real change in our industry,” Skeggs said.
While he may boast a confident exterior Skeggs said it took a lot of personal growth to get to where he is now.
“I grew up in Townsville, in North Queensland, and didn’t always feel comfortable being myself.
“When I moved to Sydney, I found my community, and my people, and it was like breathing fresh air for the first time,” Skeggs said.
“I want everyone to feel that no matter where they live or work.”
With an underlying purpose to change the heteronormative constructs within the industry, Queers in Property builds LGBTIQ+ representation and cultivates a community of “queerleaders” who champion queer change within the property industry.
QIP has instituted a series of regular networking events and other resources to help enact change, knowledge share and elevate its members.
“We’re incredibly privileged in property and construction, literally creating our future built environments,” Skeggs said.
“Imagine if the people crafting them were from a more diverse background and better represented those who will live, work and play in them.”