Happy June! When most of us think of Pride month, glitter bombs, rainbows, men in crop tops and larger-than-life drag queens come to mind. Although true, and freakin’ fabulous, Pride and its past are rooted in so much more.
The 50s and 60s showed us many of America’s very first human rights movements. These political reactions and lots of gung-ho gay activism following the Manhattan Stonewall riots led the country towards a huge cultural shift. And in June of 1969, Pride month was born; 30 days dedicated to publicly wearing your self satisfaction on your sleeve. We have come a long way since then, but as a sexual minority, our work is never done.
I recently learned that a third of all employed LGBTQ people in the US have hid their sexuality from coworkers and employers. This led me to reflect on my personal experiences and how very lucky I have been to work for companies that embrace my individuality. Coming out to family members and friends is one thing, but being open and honest in the workplace is a hurdle of its own. Chances are your besties and brothers already love you. However, your coworkers don’t owe you any allegiance. We all want to be accepted and respected, that much is universal. We are living in an exciting time where our ally numbers are trending upwards, and many thanks can be given to companies who are proud to represent, encourage and welcome a diverse range of employees.
Every year it seems as though more and more brands are commercializing their support and using their soapbox to make a difference. The Super Bowl, Olympics, award shows and other major televised events have all played host to some of our favorite household brands showcasing their LGBTQ support through innovative and heartfelt advertising. If this blog is able to reach at least one person who is struggling to be proud in their own workplace, I thought I’d share some worldwide companies that have a place for you. These guys have done it beautifully:
- Under Armor
- Soul Cycle
- Milk Makeup
- Warby Parker
- Ben & Jerry’s
- Absolut Vodka
Don’t worry, I didn’t forget my own fantastic example of inclusion here in Scottsdale, The James Agency. It’s been nothing but open arms and open minds since I started here a year ago, a freshie on the Arizona scene. Coming from San Francisco, perhaps one of the most accepting city cultures in America, I had hoped to find the same feeling of freedom when I landed in the Valley. Landing = successful. Keep tabs on our careers page, we want you too!