As we close out this year’s Pride Month, it is heartening to look back and realize how far the LGBTQ community has come since the events at the Stonewall Inn in Greenwich Village crystallized the fight for LGBTQ equality exactly 50 years ago today (on June 28, 1969). And while we have come a long way, there are still many areas lacking in equality for the LGBTQ community. One of those places is in the workforce. Today, there is no federal law in this country protecting employees from discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity. And there is no state-level protection for sexual orientation or gender identity in 29 of the 50 US states. This means employees can be legally fired for being LGBTQ. In 29 states, an employer can call an employee into their office and say “I just found out you are gay. Clean out your desk.” This may be one of the reasons why almost half (46%) of LGBTQ workers in the United States are closeted in the workplace.*
While the above is true, and while many in the LGBTQ community do not feel comfortable being out at work, the culture created at Arrowstreet couldn’t be more different. Here, diversity of people and thought is celebrated. This is true all year long, but Pride Month allows this welcoming culture to be on full display. From small gestures (turning the Arrowstreet logo on the website into a rainbow flag for the month of June), to larger gestures (almost all members of the firm enthusiastically participating in a rainbow colored photo shoot), Arrowstreet not only lets the LGBTQ community know they are supported, but they are celebrated.
This year, in honor of Pride Month, Arrowstreet is also supporting the LGBTQ leaders of the future with a generous donation to BAGLY (Boston Alliance for Gay and Lesbian Youth), a youth-led, adult-supported organization committed to social justice and creating, sustaining and advocating for programs, policies and services for the LGBTQ+ youth community. For more information on BAGLY visit their website bagly.org.
* Statistics quoted are from the article Catalyst, Quick Take: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Workplace Issues (June 17, 2019).