Celebrating with Pride
To acknowledge the Pride Week in Helsinki, we invited Malin Gustavsson from Ekvalita to share her insights on how to ensure an inclusive work community and challenge heteronormativity 365 days a year, starting with our own behavior. Her tips: Recognize, understand, have the will to change, and act on it!
Diversity, equity, and inclusion, with a focus on gender orientation and gender diversity, was the topic of an internal session arranged for our Helsinki office recently. The talk was given by Malin Gustavsson, CEO of Ekvalita, an organization that provides coaching, training, reports, and analyses on DE&I for businesses and organizations.
Malin started off by defining an equal and inclusive workplace: It is a work community where no one – neither employees nor customers/clients – experiences discrimination, fear, or shame, or is otherwise subject to inappropriate behavior based on gender, age, origin, nationality, language, religion, belief, opinion, political or trade union activity, family relations, state of health, disability, sexual orientation, or other person-related reason. In terms of gender, gender identity and expression, everyone should have equal rights, obligations and opportunities to well-being and self-expression.
She reminded us that driving change and increasing inclusivity, whether on an individual or an organizational level, can be facilitated through four steps:
- Recognizing and accepting differences and diversity,
- Becoming aware of our unconscious biases and not letting them steer us,
- Understanding that society is evolving towards post-heteronormativity, which will require us to change our mindset accordingly,
- Actively strengthening a value base where everyone has the freedom to be and express themselves, jointly agreeing on acceptable behavior and intervening in situations of conflict.
Let’s see Pride Week as much more than just a yearly recurring celebration with vibrant parades and colorful flags; it’s a genuine reminder of the importance of love, inclusivity, and belonging. It’s about human rights and showing respect for each other every day of the year.