What does LGBT stand for?
I’m LGBT – why do I need Emerald insurance?
We started Emerald Life after our own experiences – and countless conversations with the LGBT community – revealed to us that many LGBT customers weren't getting the best treatment from their insurance companies. In many cases, they were having worse experiences than their non-LGBT friends.
We exist to provide equality of experience for diverse customers, including the LGBT community, when purchasing insurance. This starts with our tailored policies and our online experience, and runs right through to our call-centres, where staff are specially trained in working with LGBT customers. Our insurance products, and the way we work with the community, are there to ensure the LGBT community has the same experience when buying insurance as the rest of society – but in a more open, thoughtful, and respectful manner.
How do you really know what the LGBT community needs? Our needs are diverse.
The LGBT community is indeed an incredibly diverse one – which is why we never assume we have all the answers. We have lots of channels for dialogue with members of the community – not just our customers – which allow us to listen to and act upon feedback. See our We Listen section for more detail on all the ways we interact with the community.
How do you deal with transgender issues?
We want to make sure that we hear from many parts of the transgender community. We convene regular meetings of our transgender advisory group - T-Squad - to check that our products and services meet the needs of the transgender community.
How are you covering bisexual issues?
Many insurers are still guilty of assuming that a customer's partner will be the opposite sex. For bisexual customers this may involve the example of an awkward conversation that occurs when a consumer informs an insurer that their new partner is of a different gender to their previous partner.
At Emerald, these kinds of conversations and assumptions never happen – because our respectful call-centre staff are specially trained in working with the LGBT community.
Another way in which we've considered bisexual customers is through our policies. We know bisexuals may face the same discrimination as our gay and lesbian customers, so the extra discrimination protection in our policies applies to bisexual consumers too. This includes our legal expenses cover in our wedding policy if you suffer discrimination from a supplier because of your sexuality (whether gay, lesbian or bisexual) or gender (if you are trans).
If you've got any feedback on how we can improve our bisexual offering, please let us know through Emerald Connect.
Are all your staff LGBT?
No, we don't believe in discrimination of any kind, and hire on talent rather than sexuality, but we are a pretty diverse group. Our main consideration when taking staff on board is their understanding of what we are trying to achieve here at Emerald – equality of experience.
Read more about who's on Our Team here.
Which LGBT community organisations do you support?
We support a range of LGBT charities and organisations. We think it helps us give something back to the LGBT community, and understand more about the detailed issues of the customers we're serving.
There are currently several organisations with which we have ongoing partnerships – meaning we provide a mixture of financial and advisory support to best meet their ongoing needs.
On the charitable side, we work with Stonewall, the Albert Kennedy Trust, the Human Dignity Trust, and Diversity Role Models. You can find out how we work with the different organisations (both charitable and community-facing) here.
How do you support LGBT organisations?
It is a priority at Emerald is to give back to the LGBT community. We decided early on that the best way to do this was to offer our time, advice, and financial support to LGBT-facing organisations that are making a positive difference.
Members of our team also play key roles in leading organisations, such as our founder Steve, an ambassador at Stonewall. We also regularly have LGBT youth interns from the Albert Kennedy Trust, to allow them to work and learn in a LGBT-supportive environment. Our senior team are also role models at Diversity Role Models.
If we believe in a cause, we think we should roll up our sleeves and really get involved.
How is my experience as an LGBT customer different from other customers' journeys?
We've spent a long time considering the answer to this question. We never think we have all the answers about LGBT customers' experiences when buying gay and lesbian insurance, but we do know a lot about the problems encountered. These are problems like assumptions about the gender of your partner, an insurer struggling to understand that you and your partner could both be a Mr or Miss, or having to argue that, as a same-sex couple with children, you should be entitled to the family discount.
We've worked hard to remove these small but significant issues – what Stonewall calls 'micro-iniquities’ – from the customer service journey for LGBT customers. This results in policies and customer care that have the needs of the LGBT community at their heart, and a specially-trained call-centre team – so there's never awkward silences, assumptions, or any need to come out to a stranger.
For more of our thoughts on these issues, please read Our Story
Can you give me an example of how you're serving the LGBT community?
The best example is our attitude to our service – which we call the Emerald Difference. In short, we've rethought the entire customer experience – from rewritten and extended policies, to respectful and understanding customer service. It is simple – we want to offer you the service that we would want to receive, and nothing less.
Our commitment to the LGBT community is to think and act differently, give members of the community the insurance service and products they deserve, and to take feedback on board. We want all our customers to know that we established the company with their needs at the heart of everything we do – which is where they'll always remain.