Finally, after a 2-year hiatus, Workplace Pride was able to physically bring many of our members together in our 2022 International Conference. This memorable event, very aptly titled “Stronger Together: Re-defining Global LGBTIQ+ Standards” was held on June 24th in the Amsterdam Ship Passengers Terminal. Hundreds of participants from many different organisations, backgrounds, and outlooks found common ground in the need to continue progress on LGBTIQ+ inclusion in workplaces around the world.
The tone for the event was set by the moving opening video followed by an equally moving video featuring Walid Hadid (Shell), which demonstrated that businesses are all in or all out when it comes to Diversity and Inclusion in the workplace. Kitty van der Heijden, Director General of International Cooperation for the government of the Netherlands took this theme even further by inter-linking many global geo-political issues with the challenges faced by the LGBTIQ+ community around the world. She ended though with a message of hope that by working together, businesses, governments, and civil society have the best chance possible to ensure progress.
An encouraging interview with the Rector of the Vrije Universiteit in Amsterdam, Jeroen Geurts, one of only two openly LGBTiQ+ university presidents in the Netherlands, ended with the announcement that the university would be joining Workplace Pride. This was quickly followed by another announcement, the creation of the new “Trans+@WorkplacePride” community, which was part of a heartfelt and informative panel representing all Workplace Pride Communities: Women, Young People, Academics, and Technically focused LGBTIQ+ people in the workplace.
Below, you will find a selection of brief video interviews with impressions from the 2022 international conference participants:
As a highlight of the afternoon plenary session, Owen Francis, Director of Higher Education & Non-Profit at British company, Nash Squared and who is a trans man, gave a passionate interview about the challenges of being transgender, but also a rousing appeal in support of being yourself at work. Emphasizing the global element of LGBTIQ+ inclusion and the many facets of civil society in Africa was Mendi Njonjo, Director of Hivos East Africa while four senior executives from Booking.com, Nike, Shell, and the Amsterdam City Council gave their overall perspective of the conference.
Finally, a preview was given of the LGBT+ Workplace Monitor, a joint effort between Workplace Pride and Deloitte that pulls together data about the inclusion of LGBTIQ+ people in workplaces from across Europe into one convenient location. The formal launching of the Monitor will take place on October 11th in Rotterdam.
What a joy it was to be back together with our many stakeholders and to continue our work together for safe workplaces around the world where LGBTIQ+ people can truly be themselves. And while are continually faced with new threats from every angle, this conference has re-assured many of us that we are truly stronger together!
Twelve breakout sessions covered everything from ‘Measurement as a vehicle of change’ to ‘New ways of working towards full inclusion in a post-pandemic world’. These sessions allowed conference participants to take a deep dive into pressing issues through highly interactive conversations with experts and their peers. Several of the breakout sessions had accompanying presentations which are included further below:
Title: “LGBTIQ+ inclusive environment for refugee students & scholars“
Moderator: Michiel Kolman, co-chair WPP and lead of the Academia@Workplace Pride community.
Title: “Using technology to safely connect with the LGBTIQ+ community during pandemic or war”
Moderator: Martijn van den Tillaart, ASML
Title: “‘What women want, by women”
Moderator: Angelique Meul, Board Member Workplace Pride
Title: “Measurement as a vehicle of change”
Moderator: Brian Yothers, Director of Operations, Workplace Pride
Title: “Practical tips for building stronger professional relationships with non-cisgender people”
Moderator: Sophie Jeckmans, Trans+@Workplace Pride
Title: “New ways of working: Full inclusion in a post-pandemic world”
Moderator: Yuli Kim, Workplace Pride