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SWAAAE Celebrates Pride Month

June 21, 2021

The Southwest Chapter Celebrates Pride Month

LGBTQ+ Pride Month is to recognize the impact individuals, communities and allies have on our history. The month of June is recognized as LGBTQ+ Pride Month to honor the Stonewall riots which occurred in New York City on June 28, 1969.

The LGBTQ+ movement has a long history on the West Coast, especially in San Francisco. Early efforts for recognition and equality, like many civil rights movements, were met with force, brutality and even harsher discrimination. Although meaningful progress was achieved in the past 50 years, both locally and nationally, SWAAAE recognizes that more dialogue and work are needed to achieve true equity, equality and inclusion for the LGBTQ+ community.

One place to start is to recognize the LGBTQ+ workforce is far more racially diverse, and more likely to include women, transgender employees and people with more varied sexual orientations than in the past, particularly among younger generations. Also, we recognize that the diversity, equity and inclusion programs in place at many organizations, while beneficial, are no longer sufficient.

The Rainbow flag is proudly displayed as a symbol for LGBTQ+ Pride. Gilbert Baker,
an openly gay man and a drag queen, designed the first rainbow flag as a powerful symbol of pride. The original flag had eight colors for the strips, with each color having its own meaning (hot pink – sex, red – life, orange – healing, yellow – sunlight, green – nature, turquoise – magic/art, indigo – serenity, and violet – spirit). Over the years, the hot pink was dropped due to the scarcity of hot pink fabric and the turquoise was dropped in order to make the flag more symmetrical. The flag was first flown in 1978 for the San Francisco Gay Freedom Day parade. In 1994, the rainbow flag was truly established as the symbol for LGBTQ+ pride and is now flown internationally.

Below are a couple videos on the history of Pride Month and ways to achieve an impactful workplace.

How the Stonewall Riots Sparked a Movement | History:

TED Talk on Three Ways to Be A Better Ally in The Workplace:

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