Pride is almost here! June is Pride month when all the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Trans folks (etc., etc.) pull out their rainbow flags and hope that their houses don’t get egged.
Some of us live in neighborhoods where we don’t think twice before showing our pride (gayborhoods), while others can’t put out a flag for fear of retaliation. Luckily, many workplaces are showing their support of their LGBT employees and customers by celebrating Pride month.
Step one, make sure your LGBT employees feel safe and welcome.
Is your workplace already a safe place? Awesome, now let’s kick it up a notch during the month of June.
Rainbow flags for everyone!
There are a lot of cool ways that workplaces can celebrate Pride, and it doesn’t have to involve a flag at every desk.
- Make some merch. Yesterday I bought a pair of Pride Reeboks, and my wife bought a pair of Pride Converse. You can get Nikes, J. Crew, Disney gear–heck you can even bargain shop at Target. A lot of organizations that sell merchandise are jumping on the Pride bandwagon to show their support for the queer community.
- Tchotchke it up. Some organizations supply their employees with Pride gear such as bracelets, flags, lanyards or pins.
- Use your tech. Create company screen savers or email signatures. Go so far as to put something on your website.
- Hand over your Insta account. Give your account over to your employees as they celebrate Pride or create a hashtag unique to your brand.
- Sponsor a parade or event. There are more options than you even know.
- Raise a flag. For real though, this is an easy one.
- Donate to the cause. Donate funds to a charity that supports LGBT people or causes. If you don’t have a charity of choice, this is mine.
Still not convinced that the LGBT community needs your organization’s support in 2019?
Dosomething.org highlighted these statistics:
- 42% of people who are LGBT report living in an unwelcoming environment.
- 6 in 10 LGBT students report feeling unsafe at school.
- 20 states have outlawed LGBT discrimination.
If you are in HR, and you support all the humans, not just the straight ones, you should consider doing something to show your support for the month of Pride. It’s only 1/12 of the year.
Last year a straight person told me they didn’t want to celebrate pride because they didn’t want people to think they were gay. My response? “Well, sir, the fact that this scares you tells me that there is still a problem.”
Want to be part of the solution? Encourage your organization to celebrate Pride at whatever level they are ready for, and please, steal some of the ideas listed above.
Kylie Quetell is an Organizational Development professional, focusing on people, strategy, and process (notice that “people” is listed first). She is a Chief Operating Officer and a phenomenal public speaker, coach, and leader. She holds a Masters Degree in Educational Leadership and certifications in Leadership Development and Change Management.
Kylie was formally a national champion rugby player, and has coached high school and women’s club sports. She has also volunteered her time working with Veterans and for environmental causes.
A Maine native, Kylie brings a love for salty language to her current home in Metro Detroit where she lives with her wife, dog, and cat.