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Pride at Work: What does it mean to be more inclusive in the workplace?


Posted on: Thursday June 13, 2024

by Maral Gholami, Colleague Experience Manager

Being more inclusive at work, especially with respect to LGBTQIA+ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer/Questioning, Intersex, Asexual/Aromantic/Agender, and others) individuals, involves creating a workplace environment where everyone feels valued, respected, and supported regardless of their sexual orientation, gender identity, or expression.

For HR managers, there are some key aspects to consider around encouraging such inclusivity:

Education and Training: Provide regular training and education on LGBTQIA+ matters including terminology, understanding bias, and ways to be an ally. This helps raise awareness and encourages a culture of respect and understanding.

Inclusive Policies: Implement and enforce policies that explicitly prohibit discrimination and harassment based on sexual orientation, gender identity, and expression. This includes anti-discrimination policies, inclusive benefits (like health insurance covering transition-related care), and family leave policies.

Supportive Environment: Create a supportive environment where LGBTQIA+ employees feel safe to express their identities. This might involve establishing LGBTQIA+ employee resource groups, offering mentorship programs, and creating safe spaces.

Visible Commitment: Demonstrate the company’s commitment to LGBTQIA+ inclusivity through visible actions. This can include meaningful participation in Pride events, supporting LGBTQIA+ causes, and using inclusive language in all company communications.

Gender-Inclusive Facilities: Provide gender-neutral restrooms and facilities, ensuring that all employees feel comfortable and respected in the workplace.

Diverse Representation: Ensure diverse representation in leadership positions and decision-making processes. This helps to reflect the diversity of the workforce and promotes a broader range of perspectives.

Inclusive Hiring Practices: Implement inclusive hiring practices that actively seek to recruit and retain LGBTQIA+ talent. This includes using gender-neutral language in job descriptions and ensuring a bias-free recruitment process.

Feedback Mechanisms: Establish mechanisms for employees to provide feedback and report issues related to inclusivity and discrimination without fear of retaliation. This can include anonymous surveys, suggestion boxes, and confidential reporting channels.

Celebrate Diversity: Recognise and celebrate the diversity of your workforce. This can include celebrating important dates like Pride Month, National Coming Out Day, and Transgender Day of Visibility.

Continuous Improvement: Regularly assess and improve your inclusivity efforts. This involves gathering feedback from employees, staying updated on best practices, and making necessary changes to policies and practices.

By implementing these strategies, workplaces can become more inclusive, ensuring that all employees, regardless of their LGBTQIA+ identity, feel valued and can thrive professionally. Remember, while it’s important to celebrate and promote acceptance and equality this month, consider these strategies throughout the year. Let us know some of the creative and interesting ways you have found successful in your workplace that have been appreciated by all your staff.


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