Delta Capita want to do everything we can to sustain employee success by creating a safe and welcoming environment for all staff. This includes supporting LGBTQIA+ colleagues.
Keyla Berressem, consultant at Delta Capita and co-head of our Pride Committee, looks at the importance of LGBT History month and National Coming Out Day. Keyla is co-head of DC’s Pride Committee. She has always been passionate about advocacy, activism, and volunteering.
At Delta Capita, we are putting a spotlight on National Coming Out Day to show LGBT+ colleagues that we accept and support them, and want them to feel comfortable being themselves.
National Coming Out Day takes place on 11 October every year, and coincides with LGBT history month in October. This month is important to the LGBTQIA+ community as it is a time to recognise the achievements of individuals who have helped progress LGBT+ rights, often at great personal cost.
While we celebrate this progress, we also remember there is much work to do. Hate crime toward people due to their sexuality or gender identity is still rife around the world. For example, there were over 20,000 such crimes in the UK in 2021. Twenty-eight percent of young LGBTQ+ people reported experiencing homelessness or housing instability at some point in their lives – and those who did were two to four times more likely to experience depression, anxiety, self-harm; and consider or attempt suicide.
Also, over a third of LGBT+ workers have hidden their identity at work for fear of discrimination.
National Coming Out Day
National Coming Out Day was first celebrated in 1988. It encourages activism and liberation on a personal level by coming out to family, friends, and colleagues, and living life openly as a queer person. Coming out enables a person to live honestly, presenting themselves as who they are, rather than fitting in with assumptions others may have of them.
Furthermore, the openness of queer individuals about their LGBT+ identities and experiences pushes back against harmful norms perpetuated by ignorance through education and empathy. “Coming out” is a personal thing and to “out” someone else without their consent is a betrayal of trust and can be harmful to the outed individual.
Delta Capita’s Pride Committee will host an event on National Coming Out Day so colleagues can share their stories and experiences. Having a community that supports you is instrumental in gathering the courage to come out.
You can support your colleagues during LGBT History Month by educating yourself on issues that members of the LGBT+ community face and ensuring you are creating a workplace environment that makes people of all identities feel welcome.
There are several other dates in October this year during which you can show your support:
- International Pronoun Day (19 October) is an opportunity to educate ourselves and respect the pronouns others choose to use. You can support this by including your pronouns in your email signature.
- On Spirit Day (20 October), people where purple as a sign of solidarity for young LGBTQ+ people facing bigotry-motivated bullying. You can show your support by wearing purple.
- Intersex Awareness Day (26 October) highlights the struggles and discrimination faced by those born with sex characteristics not conforming to the male-female gender binary.
- Asexual Awareness Week (25 to 31 October) promotes awareness and education about people who have little or no sexual or romantic feelings or activity.
Support from Delta Capita
Delta Capita want all our employees to feel included, regardless of their background, beliefs, sexual orientation or gender identity. We support and encourage staff to allocate time to causes they believe in or identify with; their cultural and religious practices; and to their physical and mental wellbeing too.
Employees that feel supported in these activities generally feel healthier, happier, and have more sense of belonging and engagement at work.
To find out more, watch this video about Delta Capita’s support for LGBTQIA+ colleagues; and read about our Pride initiatives. If you work for Delta Capita, you can even join our Pride Committee!