I’m Albert here at Thumbtack! A couple of weeks ago our Proudtacks ERG (Employee Resource Group) wrote an introduction post of our group. We’re back this week to talk about how to be a proactive LGBTQIA+ ally in your own workplace. In a study done by The Human Rights Campaign on understanding the climate of LGBTQIA+ workers, they found that 46% of LGBTQIA+ workers are closeted at work due to the possibility of being stereotyped, losing connections or relationships within the workplace, or to avoid making their co-workers feel uncomfortable, etc. This is a gap we need to continue working on to make our peers feel validated, welcomed, and valued at work.
To better understand allyship it’s important to fully understand that being an ally to your LGBTQIA+ co-workers means supporting the community by advocating for everyone’s right to equality. It means being open-minded, understanding, and conscious of their pronouns, experiences, and the struggles they face in our world. It also includes standing up to homophobia and transphobia in your work environment and educating your co-workers on the dangers of creating a toxic environment to their LGBTQIA+ peers.
A fantastic way of showing allyship in your work environment is to not assume the pronouns or gender identities of your co-workers or their partners. You can do a great deal for the LGBTQIA+ community by being attentive to their pronouns and being open to learning about their lives. This type of awareness can also help your LGBTQIA+ co-workers when standing up for them. When you hear derogatory or offensive language, you should always take a stand against this behavior and educate the individual(s) saying hurtful words on how it negatively impacts the culture of your work environment. Sharing your own knowledge of the LGBTQIA+ culture and championing equal rights can really bring perspective and empathy to the struggles of the community.
By implementing these best practices in your work environment or for your customers, you’re contributing to the movement for equality and fostering a sense of inclusivity at work. Always show your allyship to your LGBTQIA+ peers because you might not know how much it means to us. Speaking from my own experiences, allyship from my colleagues has furthered my career here at Thumbtack because of the safe space and genuine respect I receive from them.