Best employers to work for that are LGBTQ positive
Being authentic at work means bringing your true self to the job. For people who are LGBTQ, that isn’t always easy. Lingering prejudices can be barriers to inclusiveness.
Which is why you should consider the best employers to work for that are LGBTQ positive.
These hirers go above and beyond the laws that protect against discrimination. They actively promote diversity and celebrate Pride at the office.
How can you know in advance? We spoke with Colin Druhan, Executive Director of Pride at Work Canada, for insights. Through dialogue, education and thought leadership, PrideatWork.ca empowers local employers to build workplaces that celebrate all staff regardless of gender expression, gender identity, and sexual orientation.
Check the employer’s website for real signs of inclusivity
“Many employers want to share their commitment to Pride, especially around the June time period,” says Druhan. Hence you can expect to see all sorts of rainbow logos and expressions of support.
That’s a nice start. What’s more important, adds Druhan, are “indications that this inclusive spirit is embedded in an employer’s actions.” This could include donations to, or teaming up with, an LGBTQ charity. Also, companies could become members (or sponsors) of such a group, or even earn certification as a Diverse Supplier from Canada’s LGBT+ Chamber of Commerce, cglcc.ca.
Look for their employee resource group
Many employers host an internal LGBTQ affinity group. These are meant, at a minimum, to bring diverse people together in a safe space. “Staff identifying as gay, lesbian, bisexual or trans can still feel a sense of isolation at work,” says Druhan.
He notes that these employee resource groups (ERGs) have been evolving in recent years. Today the most effective ones help their host-employer meet strategic goals. Druhan points to Accenture and IBM as prime examples in Canada.
For instance, IBM is home to Blue Q + Nuance, part of its #InclusiveIBM initiative. Blue Q is a business resource group for its LGBTQ employees, with chapters across the country. Accenture sponsors a global Pride at Accenture Network and offers a support community for transgender employees. They also run an LGBTQ Ally Program, where employees act as catalysts for inclusion and raise awareness for LGBTQ equality. If you’re not sure, ask the company’s HR dep or recruiter.
Inquire about inclusive health and leave benefits
Unintentional exclusion can occur based on historical assumptions about who is eligible for benefits. The language used for bereavement, parental leave, spousal benefits, etc., needs to incorporate diversity.
As Durhan says, “The law extends to same-sex partners, so wording like birth mother, or mother and father – how can a lesbian couple feel respected by the company?”
Also, trans people are more likely to experience higher than average levels of substance abuse and mental health issues. They require affirming medical care and coverage of transitioning-related treatments that might not be paid for by provincial health policies.
Find job postings on Monster for the most inclusive employers
Pride at work boasts over 140 employer members and dozens of community partners. These employers are some of the best to work for that are LGBTQ positive. You can find many of their job postings on Monster.
Some examples? Beyond Accenture and IBM, there’s Aviva Canada, Bell, BMO Financial Group, Cisco, Deloitte, Enbridge, Loblaw, and National Bank. Also, PepsiCo, Rogers, Sodexo, The Home Depot, Unilever, and others.