Diversity in our mobile workforce

Updated: Mar 5, 2018

As international business becomes the new norm, companies are utilising a variety of employees to represent them overseas. Today's mobile workforce

reflects the diversity that exists within our society. Growing numbers of travelling women, older workers, LGBT, and individuals with disabilities mean that

companies need to adapt and update their travel safety policies.

It's important that businesses fully understand the different risks faced by individuals and know how to mitigate them. This allows travellers to safely get on with their jobs and pursue the opportunities for growth their business is seeking.


It is important that organisations understand individual traveller profiles.

For example, there are some realities of travelling as a woman that may make them more at risk for crime. Women may also need to take extra precautions when moving around the city and select secure transport from the airport to the hotel.

Members of the LGBT community may face legal issues in some of the 73 countries around the world in which same-sex relationships are illegal; or they may find their sexual orientation is not socially acceptable in the community in which they're working.

To learn more about the changing profile of business travellers, listen to regional security director Sally Napper's podcast here.


In order to prepare employees for travel, and to provide support to these employees when working in remote locations, employers may seek personal information.

Personal information includes an employee's name and address as well as more sensitive personal information such as information about the employee's sexual orientation, health, race, religious beliefs and political opinions.

In Australia, it is unlawful to request information about an employee's disability, sexual orientation or any other matter that could be used for a discriminatory purpose, unless the information is reasonably required for a non-discriminatory purpose.

When requesting personal information, it's important to clearly articulate:

  • Why the information is being collected and that there is a reasonable requirement for the employer to have this information; and

  • How the information will be used.

Once this information is collected, members may have certain obligations, including:

  • To ensure the personal information is not used for any purpose other than the original non-discriminatory purpose;

  • Not to disclose or communicate the information to anyone unless necessary; and

  • To take reasonable steps to destroy or de-identify the information when it is no longer required.

View the full legal briefing paper here.


Are your policies protecting your organisation and staff?

Our travel risk experts recently lead webinar participants through the process of developing a best practice travel risk policy. Through this process, we found that while 85% of organisations have a travel risk policy, only 19% of those policies covered diversity related issues.

Access the on-demand recording, as well as LGBT travel safety regional reports, here.


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