5 Companies That Empower LGBTQIA+ Team Members Beyond Pride Month

As LGBTQIA+ communities face targeted legislation and discrimination nationwide, these companies are making consequential investments to support team members of all identities and sexualities.

Written by Lucas Dean
Published on Jun. 08, 2023
5 Companies That Empower LGBTQIA+ Team Members Beyond Pride Month
Brand Studio Logo

Pride Month is a time to celebrate, connect and reflect on the strides the LGBTQIA+ community has made. 

But in an environment where queer people are the subject of damaging legislation and dishonest discourse, it’s also a time to remember the growing threats to progress and the ability to live freely and equitably, regardless of identity or sexuality. 

According to the ACLU‘s tracking of the 2023 legislative session, 272 anti-LGBTQIA+ bills are advancing across the United States, while 62 bills have been passed since the start of the year. These bills limit freedom of speech, self-expression and healthcare. In 12 states, doctors are now prohibited from providing gender-affirming care to transgender youth. 

Amid these threats, empty gestures of goodwill on behalf of corporations are not enough. After Pride Month concludes and the rainbows recede from logos, social media profiles and product packaging, the LGBTQIA+ community will remain as vulnerable to attacks and discrimination as before. 

Pride will be marked by fun and educational activities and events for five Boston companies and their teams. But after June ends, these companies continue to be committed to creating workplaces that value LGBTQIA+ team members, create opportunities for community-building and raise awareness for the evolving issues that queer people face.

 

Ciara Gogan
senior Manager of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging • CarGurus

CarGurus is an all-in-one platform that streamlines and simplifies the car shopping experience.

 

Describe the activities your company is coordinating for Pride Month. 

At CarGurus, we value the rich tapestry of cultural differences our employees bring to our organization. We have a vibrant, engaged LGBTQIA+ community that helps to raise awareness, build connections and community, and support local LGBTQIA+ organizations year-round.

We kick our ongoing programming into high gear for Pride Month with numerous events that celebrate our culture and history. This year we’ll start with a fireside chat with an inspirational LGBTQIA+ advocate and leader, followed by a happy hour featuring bites from a local, queer-owned restaurant. Soon after, we’ll march in Boston’s Pride for the People parade. 

Mid-month, we’ll share allyship tips — and rainbow cupcakes, of course — and host our own virtual company-wide Pride parade. For this event, employees, whom we call “Gurus,” will post pictures with rainbow gear on Slack; participants will be entered in a raffle to win several queer-centered books. We’ll round out Pride Month with an event that uses gamification to showcase LGBTQIA+ history and icons, and helpful tips for continuing to celebrate and support the community beyond June. We’ll make a donation for each Guru who contributes to the event.

 

How does your company support and empower the LGBTQIA+ members of your team? 

At CarGurus, we continuously build and nurture a global culture where inclusiveness is a reflex, not an initiative. Two key ways we do this are through our employee benefits and education. New LGBTQIA+ Gurus are often wowed by our inclusive benefits that include several services and offerings specific to their community, including gender-affirming services, infertility support, adoption assistance and an inclusive parental leave policy that is the same regardless of how a child is joining a family. This year, we also introduced LGBTQIA+-specific mandatory training for all employees, focusing on best practices for inclusive communication, supportive behaviors and allyship. 

 

At CarGurus, we continuously build and nurture a global culture where inclusiveness is a reflex, not an initiative.”

 

Additionally, we have an active LGBTQIA+@CarGurus ERG that provides employees with social, structural and professional support while fostering visibility and empowerment in the broader community. It also acts as a strategic partner to CarGurus leadership to ensure our practices and policies are LGBTQIA+ friendly. Gurus look forward to the ERG’s spirited monthly “Zocials” (Zoom socials) to catch up with friends from across the organization.

 

Beyond the month of June, what are some examples of ways your company supports or advocates for the LGBTQIA+ community?

We believe that advocacy and support for all our communities from traditionally marginalized groups must extend to all 12 months of the year. Here’s some of what that looks like for our LGBTQIA+ community:

In 2023 we became the 300th company to sign the Human Rights Campaign’s Business Statement on Anti-LGBTQIA+ State Legislation, stating our clear opposition to harmful legislation aimed at restricting the access of LGBTQIA+ people in society.

In 2022 and 2023, we donated to the Transgender Emergency Fund and Human Rights Campaign to support their work with the community

We encourage the sharing of pronouns in our HR systems and email and provide pronoun stickers at our front desks for all employees and visitors.

Our philanthropic programs require that charities must comply with the requirements of equal employment and nondiscrimination laws, which include gender identity and sexual orientation.

 

 

Shannyn Burch
Associate VP, Talent Development • Definitive Healthcare

Definitive Healthcare is a platform that reduces market complexity and provides commercial intelligence on delivery systems, physicians, payors, patients, government organizations and more. 

 

Describe the activities your company is coordinating for Pride Month. 

Each year, Definitive Healthcare puts a tremendous focus on OUT@DH, our LGBTQIA+ affinity group, particularly during two periods of the year — celebrating Pride in June and Coming Out Month in October. For each, we establish dedicated programming, including bringing in external speakers, supporting local LGBTQIA+ organizations in our community and celebrating with our employees via various events in our office in Framingham, MA, and virtually with our remote employees.  

This year, we are hosting an office Pride party to celebrate Pride Month, featuring a live DJ, drag karaoke, lawn games, an open bar, finger food and Pride-themed cookies. We’re expecting at least 300 local employees to attend and support the festivities. 

In support of the local LGBTQIA+ community, we are also working with Out MetroWest, an organization focused on building communities where LGBTQIA+ youth thrive. Definitive Healthcare will be volunteering and attending their Pride block party. 

 

How does your company support and empower the LGBTQIA+ members of your team? 

OUT@DH focuses on creating a culture and climate that is supportive, inclusive, and welcoming for LGBTQIA+ employees, clients, families and friends. The group’s purpose is to make Definitive Healthcare the best place to work and grow for those identifying as LGBTQIA+. OUT@DH supports Definitive Healthcare’s efforts to diversify our workforce as well as promote equality, raise visibility and increase understanding of the LGBTQIA+ community. 

One area, in particular, we have substantially increased our focus on this past year is transgender awareness and support. We made changes to our healthcare plans to expand our coverage for transgender employees and have implemented gender-neutral bathrooms within our offices. 

 

We made changes to our healthcare plans to expand our coverage for transgender employees and have implemented gender-neutral bathrooms within our offices.” 

 

 

Beyond the month of June, what are some examples of ways your company supports or advocates for the LGBTQIA+ community?

Outside of Pride Month, Definitive Healthcare plans to continue working with Out MetroWest as we have committed to matching up to $3,000 in donations this year to support this incredibly important nonprofit. We will be attending their annual gala later this year and half of the money raised and matched this year will serve as a sponsorship to demonstrate our commitment to building a long-standing relationship with this ambassador organization and supporting their valuable programs for years to come.

 

Emily Fisher

MineralTree is a Global Payments Company that aims to create new ways to improve and automate financial processes. 

 

Describe the activities your company is coordinating for Pride Month. 

For Pride Month, we will be hosting an Inclusivity workshop in which team members will explore the concept of intersectionality and how it shapes the unique way we can enact change and deepen our understanding of LGBTQIA+ identities and terminology. Our Pride Network is hosting an event for Atlanta, where our headquarters is located. Team members are invited to a Pride Night at Truist Park with the Atlanta Braves. We will also be hosting a session titled “Sexuality in the Workplace.” Participants will learn how to create a positive work environment that is caring and inclusive for all. Participants will have opportunities for discussion to ask questions and learn best practices to build a culture that encourages open conversations while still recognizing the right to privacy and confidentiality. 

 

How does your company support and empower the LGBTQIA+ members of your team? 

Global Payments is committed to providing comprehensive benefits coverage for all. In support of our LGBTQIA+ community and their dependents, we offer benefits such as gender-affirming care, benefits for same-sex spouses and domestic partners, as well as fertility and adoption assistance programs. 

 

We offer benefits such as gender-affirming care, benefits for same-sex spouses and domestic partners, as well as fertility and adoption assistance programs.”

 

We have an LGBTQIA+ ERG for anyone in the company who wants to be more involved in the community. We also have access to the Global Payments Pride Network, which highlights news in the community and offers resources such as mental health services and articles such as “How to Create Inclusive Workplaces for Transgender and Nonbinary Employees.” 

 

 

Meg Bleeker
HR Manager • Soofa

Soofa is a marketing tech company that provides cities and advertisers with solar-powered outdoor advertising kiosks. 

 

Describe the activities your company is coordinating for Pride Month. 

Our team is planning a fully remote rainbow tie-dye craft for our colleagues and implicit bias training so that we can celebrate LGBTQIA+ Pride Month with both education and a bit of fun!

 

How does your company support and empower the LGBTQIA+ members of your team? 

Our team is mostly remote and comes from many different walks of life, but we have such a strong culture that people regularly express that they feel Soofa is a safe space to be exactly who they are. We use pronouns in our email signatures and on Messenger and ensure our policies and benefits reflect our diverse community. As a woman-founded, sustainable advertising platform, we work with local businesses in different communities, and we are very proud to support LGBTQIA+ businesses in cities across the United States, which speaks to our business ethos.

 

Our team comes from many different walks of life, but we have such a strong culture that people regularly express that they feel Soofa is a safe space to be exactly who they are.”

 

Beyond the month of June, what are some examples of ways your company supports or advocates for the LGBTQIA+ community?

One requirement of our company is to include pronouns in our email signatures. I asked someone on our team who identifies as non-binary about the ways they feel supported. They shared that this is incredibly meaningful as it allows them, and others, to convey how they wish to be referred to properly, and as a result, it publicly shows that we support the LGBTQIA+ community.

Soofa supports the LGBTQIA+ community year-round simply by fostering an incredibly accepting community. Several members of our small team vocally identify as LGBTQIA+ members who can freely advocate within and outside of the company. Additionally, Soofa has a DEI team of several company members from various areas that gather information regarding LGBTQIA+ and other minority communities year-round. Education is key to a more accepting and open society, so we can advocate for the LGBTQIA+ community simply by educating our peers through firsthand information.

 

 

Sasha Palafox
Sr. Account Executive & Co-Event Chair, Pride & Editor-in-Chief, Monthly Awareness Newsletter & Host • Quickbase

Quickbase’s no-code operational agility platform helps organizations to improve operations through real-time insights and automation across complex processes.

 

What activities is your company coordinating for Pride Month?

For Pride Month, we are sending out Pride swag, sharing our Monthly Awareness Newsletter, hosting a volunteer day and panel discussion, and so much more. 

We are holding Tell Me More Tuesday, a series where we educate, support and empower important topics and welcome space for open discussion. Additionally, we’re hosting a Pride swag competition where participants design t-shirts. The winner’s design will be printed and given out to the Quickbase Pride family.

 

How does your company support and empower the LGBTQIA+ members of your team? 

We support the LGBTQIA+ community by always being here in times of need. With the ever-changing laws and different hate attacks happening, we always hold space for anyone who needs it, even in one-on-one environments, ensuring we never have to feel alone and showing we are there for one another. 

 

With the ever-changing laws and different hate attacks happening, we always hold space for anyone who needs it, even in one-on-one environments.”

 

We have a family-only chat ensuring a safe space where all family members are welcome; we can share our stories, discuss upsetting laws, exciting LGBTQIA+ announcements and more. 

One of our teammates is the head of the Pride committee in Austin, Texas, and Quickbase is one of their sponsors for their annual Pride festival. 

We host Gayme Nytes — driving engagement, laughter and fun for all. We also do quarterly meet and greets to ensure we are welcoming anyone new and giving space to get to know one another.

 

Beyond the month of June, what are some examples of ways your company supports or advocates for the LGBTQIA+ community?

Every month in the Monthly Awareness Newsletter, we write an article on someone from the LGBTQIA+ community sharing their story, their success and what they have overcome to get to where they are today. This helps give employees a voice of empowerment and encouragement. 

Additionally, each year in December, during the holidays, we hold an annual Pride holiday party for the whole company to come join us and celebrate one another.

 

Responses have been edited for length and clarity. Images by Shutterstock

Hiring Now
ZS
Artificial Intelligence • Healthtech • Professional Services • Analytics • Consulting