5 Ways Businesses, Big or Small, Can do More to Support the LGBTQ community
I feel like first and foremost it’s important to recognize that as we leave pride month, that every month should be about supporting the suppression and discrimination of the LGBTQ community, especially from a business side.
Businesses voicing their support for the LGBTQ community is undoubtedly impactful, but actually taking action is the true measure of a company’s commitment.
There are lists of companies that were released throughout pride month to highlight which organizations are on the right side of history, which has repeatedly been shown to be a profitable approach for businesses to adopt as 64% of Americans are more likely to buy from LGBT-inclusive companies.
Here’s a list of ways to support the LGBT community all year long.
1) Create a safe workspace for your employees.
Businesses need to get the basics right – by first establishing inclusive policies, equivalent benefits for same-sex couples, and funding global LGBT+ resource groups and ally programs.
2) Hire leadership that reflects your commitment.
3) Train your staff on diversity and inclusion.
Recognize and address bias: Unconscious bias can get in the way of hiring and promoting people who are different. Ensure that you are addressing it in your processes to eliminate workplace prejudice and employee discrimination.
4) Provide your staff with volunteer opportunities which can add diversity into their daily life.
Providing a list of supported volunteer opportunities ensures that leadership can direct volunteer hours toward supporting LGBTQ causes and create the type of work culture employees want to be a part of.
5) Donate to causes that affect the community regionally.
Donate to LGBTQ institutions working on important causes, especially in their local community.
There’s a variety of ways to donate to impact the important issues like ensuring equal access to education to LGBTQ women and gender-nonconforming people or fighting rampant homelessness among LGBTQ youth. A partnership like this not only provides funding for a worthwhile cause, but publicly demonstrates the company’s willingness to act on its support of its LGBTQ employees, colleagues in their industry, and the greater community.
Another way to donate money beyond sending a check to an institution in the mail is donating a portion of the proceeds from the sale of a product or service to a particular cause. This is an opportunity for your company to directly take action to make an impact, while also letting your employees, customers, and colleagues know that you are proud to actively support the community.
Lastly, do your research, get specific, and don’t overgeneralize. An often overlooked step in this process is taking the time to do the research to learn about the nuances of the LGBTQ community to inform how your company can best make an impact.
It is important to raise awareness to those who may not get that LGBTQ people are all very different across beliefs, philosophy, religion, sexuality, lifestyles and don’t all like the same music, TV shows, art and don’t all have the same culture.
Here is a list of resources that perhaps you could support and use as an outreach for those in need as well as an important LGBTQ online safety guide that aims to empower LGBTQs and give them the tools to protect themselves online.
Written Guest Blogger Timothy Chucta