SCOTLAND has long-prided itself on being a tolerant and inclusive place for minorities.

Recent high-profile ad campaigns confronting homophobic and transphobic hate by the Scottish government and Police Scotland have been feted worldwide, and the country is set to make history when it becomes the first to embed the teaching of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LBTQI) rights in the school curriculum.

However, a recent survey of the top 100 LBTQ employers in the UK shows we may be less tolerant than we think.

Only five Scottish employers featured in the top 100, out of a total of 445 organisations and companies across different sectors which vyed for a coveted spot on the list, and was compiled by equality charity Stonewall.

Moreover, the Scottish employers featured did not even make the top ten. Skills Development Scotland, the Golden Jubilee Foundation, the Crown Office & Procurator Fiscal Service, the Scottish Government and the City of Glasgow College were ranked at numbers 18, 37, 51, 72 and 81 respectively.

However, Skills Development Scotland were given a special commendation for going above and beyond to make trans staff feel accepted.

The survey comes as trans people continue to face worrying levels of abuse in both their private lives and in the public sphere. One in eight trans employees (12 per cent) have been physically attacked by a colleague or customer in the last year.

Moreover, research released by Stonewall last year that showed more than a third of LGBT staff (35 per cent) have hidden they are LGBT at work and almost one in five LGBT employees (18 per cent) have been the target of negative comments from colleagues because of their identity.

Darren Towers, Stonewall’s executive director, said:"Scotland has made impressive strides when it comes to driving LGBT equality forward in society. We’re very proud of the employers featured in the Top 100. We know from our recent research that one in eight lesbian, gay and bi staff in Scotland (12 per cent) are not open with anyone at work about their sexual orientation, while nearly one in five trans employees (18 per cent) aren’t open about their gender identity for fear of discrimination. So, whilst employers based or working in Scotland have achieved much, there’s more for us all to do. Every employer has the power and the opportunity to make changes to improve the situation for LGBT staff."

John Wilkes, Equality and Human Rights Commission head of Scotland, said: "Scotland takes pride from the fact we are a tolerant and inclusive country. It’s good to see the businesses and public bodies, including the Scottish Government, helping to lead the way on LGBT rights but we’d really like to see more Scottish employers on this list and urge them to learn from the success of others. Everyone in Scotland has the right to a working environment that helps them reach their full potential.”

Nationally, law firm Pinsent Masons - which has three offices in Scotland - is said to be the best lesbian, gay, bi and trans (LGBT) employer in the UK because it demonstrated a range of inclusive policies and practices for lesbian, gay and bi staff, and featured specific trans-inclusive staff training to create a welcoming environment for trans colleagues, clients and visitors.

Other national organisations which have offices in Scotland such as security service MI5, Lloyds Banking Group and Barclays also featured in the top 100.

Universities featured prominently in this year's list with nearly one-fifth of the top 100 ranked employers in the higher education sector

Stonewall collected more than 92,000 anonymous responses from employees on their experience of the UK’s workplace culture and diversity for the survey.