Today is Transgender Day of Visibility.
I am an ally.
I understand that this is not my space.
I do not wish to speak on behalf of the trans or non-binary community.
But, as an ally, I think we have a real responsibility to talk openly about what visibility and inclusion look like in our business, and how you can start this journey too.
Stonewall’s ‘Trans in Britain’ report, a review of the workforce carried out in 2018, found that
‘two in five trans people have had a hate crime committed against them in the last year, two in five trans young people had attempted suicide and one in eight trans people had been physically attacked by colleagues or customers at work.’
Additional insight from the report showed that
‘one in eight trans employees (12 per cent) have been physically attacked by colleagues or customers in the last year. Half of trans and non-binary people (51 per cent and 50 per cent respectively) have hidden or disguised the fact that they are LGBT at work because they were afraid of discrimination.’
Moments like today are why Hidden exists, we seek to unearth the hidden talent pool in all realms of diverse communities.
At Hidden, we are still learning - if we aren’t learning, we aren’t evolving.
We believe that listening is a big part of our education in this space, and that inclusion is a journey that you are on, not a destination that you arrive at.
We believe in an inside-out approach, do the work inside your business first.
We have built and embedded policies that are inclusive and put a huge focus on the use of inclusive language around birth parent & non-birth parent leave, menstrual health and gender reassignment. We have empowered our DE&I committee to hold us accountable internally.
We know it can be difficult to find the starting point on this journey, so here are 4 things that you can do today to make a difference, and move your business forward:
Talk about pronouns with your people - ask them to include them in their email signatures, LinkedIn profiles and alongside their names on Zoom or Teams calls. It may be a small thing for you but it shows the trans & non-binary community that you are an ally.
Look at using inclusive language in any people policies you already have in place - it’s an easy fix. Don’t assume gender, for example, not all people that menstruate are female and not all females menstruate.
Ask for people to volunteer inside your business to form a working group - and ask them to look at your gaps such as policies, how inclusive are they (language used), values (do they foster inclusion) and ask them to report back with ideas on how your business can be more inclusive.
Create ongoing learning opportunities for your people around trans and non-binary inclusion - there are some fabulous specialists that run (paid) workshops in this space.
Finally - don’t expect your trans or non-binary employees to jump in and lead on this, it is not their job to do this for your business, the responsibility is on everyone else as allies to this space.