Who are we?
Pride is both a celebration and a protest for inclusion of the LGBTQ+ community. We celebrate and honor what we have accomplished, but also reflect on what needs to be done to create a more equitable workplace and world. We are the co-leaders of Queer42, an employee-led Code42 Affinity Group. At Code42, inclusion is everyone’s responsibility. Everyone is respected. Everyone has a fair chance. Everyone is an ally. Unique experiences and backgrounds fuel our success.
As queer identifying folks at Code42 we want to foster an environment where LGBTQ people can bring their authentic selves to the workplace, feel supported by their teams and the company through inclusive benefits, internal processes, pay, and financial support of the LGBTQ employee resource group.
How did we get started?
We founded Queer42 to create a safe space for LGBTQ+ persons at Code42, promote cross-department relationships, education, resources, and empowerment for employees through conversations with actionable takeaways.
Queer42 creates actionable change in our organization that enables LGBTQ+ folks to bring their authentic selves to work. The most notable initiative is our participation in the Human Rights Commission (HRC) Corporate Equality Index (CEI). This Index ranks companies on LGBTQ+ inclusion and best practices. As a result of our participation in the CEI; Code42 now offers domestic partner benefits regardless of gender identity, established processes for transgender people to transition at Code42, and including transgender affirming care as a part of Code42’s benefit package. One example of an inclusive process we introduced is creating manager guidelines and IT processes to easily update a person’s name and pronouns.
Where are we going?
While these changes are amazing additions; one of our core values at Code42 is the relentless pursuit of better. In order to live this value, we will continue to identify opportunities to improve our benefits package and employee experience. We are taking steps towards continuous improvement through the following milestones:
- Queer42 recently partnered with Mossier, a local Minneapolis company that specializes in LGBTQ recruiting and recommending best practices for inclusion
- Benchmarking Code42 Benefits and policies against best practices via the Human Rights Campaign
- Voluntary self-identification survey to gather data to complete an pay equity analysis across Code42
- Corporate funding and support of LGBTQ+ employee resource group
- Build advocacy and awareness of anti LGBTQ+ policy
How can your organization be more inclusive?
Our journey for an equitable and inclusive workplace is ongoing. Having strong executive sponsorship and partnership with Human Resources was paramount to improving the lives of LGBTQ+ folks at Code42. We encourage you to begin your journey for an equitable and inclusive workplace by reviewing your benefits packages, practices, and LGBTQ+ policies against CEI criteria & recommendations.
Make a case for receiving non-monetary and monetary support from your organization. An organization that invests either via employee time or funding LGBTQ+ resource groups demonstrates they see value in creating inclusive environments both at work and at the world at large. Create opportunities for employees & your organization to support LGBTQ+ causes. Opportunities for volunteering, guest speakers that teach about the community, pronouns 101, or steps that employers and employees can take to build a more inclusive community. We invite you to take our stories, experiences, and learnings and take action in your own organizations to leave the world a better place.
Happy Pride from ‘Queer42-ers’
Gerald Strauss & Morgan Miller