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Australian Taxation Office (ATO)

  • #5 in Government & public service
  • 1,000 - 50,000 employees

The ATO LGBTI+ experience

Australian Taxation Office (ATO)

Embracing diversity creates a workplace where all staff are valued, respected and able to bring their unique and best selves to work.

We recognise the importance of the inclusion of LGBTQIA+ identities in the workplace. One of our many initiatives is the ATOMIC (Making Inclusion Count) network, made up of LGBTI+ members and allies. 

Joanne Murphy and Scarlet Bortolotto are former graduates who have done significant work for the ATOMIC network and wider LGBTI+ community. In 2023, Joanne was awarded an Australia Day Achievement Medallion recognising her efforts for advocacy for the LGBTQIA+ community and community fundraising.

Joanne and Scarlet were immediately introduced to ATOMIC upon starting the ATO Graduate Program. “It gave me a safe space where I could be open about my identity,” said Joanne. 

The two have since made huge strides for the ATO LGBTQIA+ Community. 

As a transgender woman, Scarlet set out to streamline the process of changing a name within the ATO HR system. “A name change shouldn’t be this difficult […] even married women just give up- but trans people can’t really give up in that matter.” In only a few months, Scarlet identified every place a name needed to be changed in the system and has been streamlining the process for all transgender individuals in the future.

Joanne has led many initiatives such as hosting IDAHOBIT (International Day Against Homophobia, Bi, Intersex and Transphobia), ‘Wear it Purple Day’ and other days of visibility. This is important to her because “everyone should be free to bring their whole self to work; be that their sexual orientation, their gender identity or any other ‘thing’ that makes them unique.”

Scarlet and Joanne are most proud of the support they provide, “I get to promote the message that love is love and everybody deserves respect,” said Joanne, while Scarlet says she’s proudest of “helping other people that come out as trans during the workplace.”

We aim to provide a workplace in which LGBTI+ staff can feel safe and supported to contribute their best work. We encourage you to apply for the APS workforce and help us to serve our diverse Australian community.