CatSci is committed to ensuring diversity, inclusivity and equality run through every aspect of the business, and that includes our dedication to our LGBTQ+ colleagues and the wider community.
According to Stonewall (2022), more than a third of LGBTQ+ staff hide who they are at work in fear of discrimination, as they are often confronted with exclusionary policies, language and attitudes. At CatSci, we strive to ensure this is not the case. It is not just a tick-box exercise, but it is about providing LGBTQ+ individuals with the same opportunities to thrive as anyone else, and allowing them to unlock their full potential and to live their lives freely and openly. At CatSci, we are passionate about creating a culture which is inclusive, accepting and accessible to all.
LGBTQ+ inclusion is at the core of our Equality, Diversity and Inclusion policy, and in 2022 we launched a separate LGBTQ+ Policy to further set guidelines on becoming more inclusive. The policy also explains how CatSci supports transitioning colleagues and advises our team managers on the best practice and the duty of care. Our Talent and Inclusion Manager, Seb York, runs frequent training sessions on how and why it is important to be inclusive. Also, he has run sessions on the importance of pronouns and gender-neutral language. This allows us to ensure our policies are heard across the business and our colleagues can become more mindful, while they’re also encouraged to share their own experiences and journeys, if they feel comfortable to do so.
CatSci also encourage employees to share their pronouns. Clearly stating your pronouns, (whether they’re she/her, he/him, they/them, or a mixture of pronouns, such as she/they or he/they) has become a way for everyone to normalise not assuming someone’s gender. When everyone gets into the habit of stating their pronouns, this helps trans and non-binary people feel more comfortable to state theirs. All of our policies are written in gender-neutral language to avoid bias towards a particular gender.
We celebrate LGBTQ+ History Month, Pride, and Trans Day of Visibility just as do for other important days in the calendar. This boosts LGBTQ+ awareness and inclusion throughout the year, and also allows time for reflection.
As a further demonstration of our allyship to the community, we provided LGBTQ+ pins that our colleagues wear with pride. This is one way of creating an inclusive atmosphere and sending a powerful message to people who might be unsure about whether they can be themselves in the workplace. Plus, we attended Pride Cymru in 2022 to celebrate our LGBTQ+ employees and LGBTQ+ people in the wider community, and are already preparing for this year’s event.
Seb York, Talent and Inclusion Manager, said: “LGBTQ+ inclusion makes the workplace safer and happier for everyone. By nurturing an accepting and inclusive workplace, we allow a different set of opinions and experiences to arise. This builds a more innovative and thoughtful setting for all, where everyone is included and welcome. Our differences make us who we are, and we will continue to build a company where ‘you can be the best you’ applies to all of us.”