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Gold employers: PM&C and ATO recognised at LGBTI inclusion awards

by David Donaldson, The Mandarin, 28 May 2019

 

The Australian Tax Office and the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet have been named among Australia’s best employers for LGBTI inclusion.

Both were included on the list of 14 gold employers at last week’s Australian LGBTI Inclusion Awards, hosted by ACON’s Pride in Diversity — the national not-for-profit employer support program for LGBTI workplace inclusion.

The awards are based on the results of the Australian Workplace Equality Index — an evidence-based benchmarking tool that annually assesses workplaces in their progress and impact on LGBTI inclusion initiatives.

PM&C was also named most improved.

RMIT University took out the top spot as employer of the year — the first time the award has not gone to a private sector business. RMIT also won best on trans and gender diverse inclusion, acknowledging the support offered via the gender transition guide, including special leave for staff transitioning genders.

Andrea Kenafake, divisional manager city planning and sustainability at Brisbane City Council, took the executive leadership award, while her employer was included on the gold list. Nicholas Steepe from Charles Sturt University won the out role model award.

The inclusive service provider of the year is Uniting, which is also a gold employer. The full list of gold employers includes:

  • Australian Taxation Office
  • Brisbane City Council
  • Clayton Utz
  • Deakin University
  • Department of the Prime Minister & Cabinet
  • EY
  • Macquarie Bank Limited
  • MinterEllison
  • NAB
  • PwC
  • QBE Insurance Australia
  • RMIT University
  • Uniting
  • Woolworths Group

Four employers were awarded platinum status for longevity in high performance — Accenture, LendLease, ANZ and the University of Western Australia. Two employers have qualified for platinum status next year — EY and the Macquarie Group.

There has been continued growth in participation in the index since its launch in 2010, said Dawn Hough, director of ACON’s pride inclusion programs.

“This is the ninth year of the AWEI and, once again, we have record numbers of employers across all sectors and states participating in the index. The accompanying employee survey elicited a staggering 27,349 responses, which underscores the importance of LGBTI inclusion in the workplace,” Hough said.

“Practice is continuing to shift significantly in this space with employers across Australia not only maintaining their commitment to LGBTI inclusion but in fact strengthening their inclusion initiatives and activities. Scores required to obtain the various tiers of recognition have continued to increase.”

Pride in Diversity is part of Pride Inclusion Programs, a suite of social inclusion programs delivered by ACON, Australia’s largest LGBTQ health organisation.

Media agency Initiative scores two national awards for LGBTI inclusion at AWEI Awards

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Media communications agency Initiative has been awarded two of the top honours at the 2019 Australian Workplace Equality Index (AWEI) Awards, celebrating LGBTI Inclusion. AWEI is a rigorous, evidence-based benchmarking program that annually assesses workplaces on the progress and impact of their LGBTI inclusion initiatives.

The awards are hosted by ACON’s Pride in Diversity, the national not-for-profit employer support program for LGBTI workplace inclusion.

Initiative was awarded Gold in the Small Employer (less than 200 people) category and was also named Small Employer of the Year. The agency was among many of Australia’s largest and high-profile corporate entities recognised for their LGBTI inclusion programs, such as Macquarie Bank, Australian Taxation Office, ANZ, LendLease, Woolworths, PwC, Brisbane City Council and RMIT University.

Initiative Australia has focused its LGBTI inclusion through the agency’s bespoke Rainbow Elephant program that includes developing HR policy and diversity practice, strategy and accountability, LGBTI training, network and champion initiatives, visibility and inclusion, community engagement and advocacy. The program is led by the agency’s head of studio Olivia Warren and national director of people and culture, Scott Laird.

Says Warren: “This award fills me with a lot of pride. I feel very fortunate to work in an environment that not only accepts me for who I am but fosters an environment that is supportive and inclusive for all.”

Initiative’s national CEO Melissa Fein said the LGBTI inclusion awards were a massive highlight for the business: “The whole agency has supported our progress in being a more inclusive and welcoming workplace, especially for the LGBTI community. Olivia and Scott have also been inspirational leaders for a group of agency volunteers and these awards prove how popular and effective our Rainbow Elephant program has been.”

There were just 17 employers, Australia wide, who received Gold standard in LGBTI inclusion, three of which were in the small-employer category (less than 200 employees) where Initiative was recognised. The agency’s Rainbow Elephant program continues to be an important internal program.

View the winners here.

Sapphire Inspire Award Winner 2019

12 June 2016

The Sapphire inspire Award celebrates the achievements of an LGBTIQ+ Woman, from their impact on workplace inclusion and support of other out women, to contributions they’ve made to promote and encourage such visibility. It is an individual award nomination that is part of the annual Australian Workplace Equality Index (AWEI) and announced at The Australian LGBTI Inclusion Awards.

With some outstanding achievements from several women nominated for this year’s award, the 2019 winner is Caitlin Monnery–Korving from ANZ. The award was announced by Pride in Diversity Relationship Managers Sarah Cox and Nicki Elkin, who govern the Sapphire Initiative.

Caitlin impressed the judges with the inspiring number of activities she delivered throughout 2018. In particular, she was instrumental in the development and creation of Women in Pride, a network for LGBTIQ+ women and allies within ANZ, and co-creator of Rainbow Women, an external network in Melbourne. Caitlin also drove ANZ’s early endorsement of the Darlington Statement for Intersex People.

The name of the award stems from Pride in Diversity’s Sapphire Initiative, developed to generate greater awareness of the unique challenges faced by Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex (LGBTIQ+) women in the workplace. The Sapphire initiative seeks to provide women with an opportunity to openly express and discuss some of these challenges in a safe, non-confrontational professional environment.

The initiative seeks to engage LGBTIQ+ women (regardless of whether or not they are out at work) who feel passionate about wanting to see a more inclusive workplace, one in which LGBTIQ+ women can freely be themselves at work and one in which there is a greater visibility of  ‘out’ female role models.

The dual impacts of being an out LGBTIQ+ female role model in the workplace is often referred to as the double-glass ceiling. Caitlin’s work in this area has certainly had a major impact, progressing towards equality, inclusion and visibility of LGBTIQ+ women in the workplace.

Click here to learn more about the Sapphire Inititative or become a member.

This year, ANZ was also recognised as a Platinum Employer of the AWEI, having achieved Gold Employer Status for the past four years. In recent years, ANZ has previously been recipients of:

  • Employer of the Year (2017)
  • The Sally Webster Ally Award (Melissa Tandy, 2016 & 2018)
  • External Media Campaign (2018)
  • Trans and Gender Diverse Inclusion (2017)
  • Out Role Model Award (Dave Beks, 2017)

ANZ is a Pride in Diversity member.

University of Sydney awarded Silver at the Australian LGBTI Inclusion Awards

University of Sydney, 27 May 2019

 

 

The University of Sydney has been named as a Silver Employer at the Australian LGBTI Inclusion Awards, up from last year’s Bronze award. The awards are based on the results of submissions to the Australian Workplace Equality Index.

Dr Matt Pye, Academic Fellow in the School of Life and Environmental Sciences and Co-Chair of the University’s Pride Network described what the award meant to him: “It means validation for the work that the whole team does, in addition to our own jobs, trying to instil a set of behaviours, policies and procedures to influence change, with equity for all being our ultimate goal. This kind of award means being recognised by external bodies in competition a range of other impressive high-profile organisations, all held to an extremely high standard. For a University to achieve this status is no mean feat and I am so proud of all of the work we have achieved over such a short period of time.”

Christie Adamson, School Manager of Sydney Nursing School and Co-Chair of the Pride Network, said, “I am delighted that our work in trying to improve LGBTIQ inclusion at the University has been recognised in this way. It recognises the importance of providing a safe and supportive environment for our LGBTIQ staff and students. With a highly engaged Pride Network, we will continue to see further growth and improvement in this space. Thank you to everyone who has worked so hard for this achievement.”

I would like to congratulate everyone who contributed to the success of the University in winning this award. Professor Stephen Garton, Deputy Vice-Chancellor and Provost

Step up to silver

Silver recognition is given to employers that have obtained high scores on the AWEI and provided evidence of a substantial amount of sustained or new work in LGBTI inclusion. The recognition is difficult to obtain and quite often, the score differences between silver and gold recognition are minimal.

Submissions are marked according to a set of stringent criteria and given a total score out of 200. In 2018, the University received 107 points and this year we received 153. The scores required to achieve each level have gone up year on year, making it harder to achieve the same level – a reflection of the strides being made in this area by organisations across Australia.

Provost and Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Professor Stephen Garton, who is executive sponsor of the Pride Network, said that the results are a testament to the hard work and dedication of so many of our staff.

“I would like to congratulate everyone who contributed to the success of the University in winning this award, which recognises our deep commitment to enabling all of our LGBTIQ staff and students to bring their whole selves to work and to their University study. It is so important to the culture of our institution that we create space for all of us to do our best work,” Professor Garton said.

Australia’s top organisations for LGBTI inclusion announced

ACON, 24 May 2019

 

RMIT University has been named the 2019 Employer of the Year for LGBTI inclusion at the Australian LGBTI Inclusion Awards, hosted by ACON’s Pride in Diversity – the national not-for-profit employer support program for LGBTI workplace inclusion in Australia.

More than 730 business leaders, diversity champions and HR professionals representing all sectors and employer sizes came together at the Hyatt Regency in Sydney to celebrate the results of the Australian Workplace Equality Index (AWEI) – a rigorous, evidence-based benchmarking tool that annually assesses workplaces in the progress and impact of their LGBTI inclusion initiatives.

This year reflects the greatest diversity of top employers achieving Platinum and Gold Employer Status in the history of the AWEI. It is also the first time that a non-private commercial organisation has been awarded Employer of the Year status.

This year top employers spanned public, private, higher education and not-for-profit sectors:

  • Four employers have been awarded Platinum Status for longevity in high performance (Accenture, LendLease, ANZ, UWA).
  • Two employers have qualified for Platinum Status next year (EY, Macquarie Group).
  • 14 employers have been awarded Gold Status for highest results within the current year.
  • The Small Employer component of the index also saw an increase in participation and scores with Initiative Media taking out the Small Employer of the Year.

 The year’s awards were attended by a record number of CEOs and business leaders with Qantas CEO and Patron, Alan Joyce, providing this year’s keynote address.

Dawn Hough, Director of ACON’s Pride Inclusion Programs, said there has been continued growth in participation in the index since its launch in 2010.

“This is the ninth year of the AWEI and, once again, we have record numbers of employers across all sectors and states participating in the index. The accompanying employee survey elicited a staggering 27,349 responses, which underscores the importance of LGBTI inclusion in the workplace,” Hough said.

“Practice is continuing to shift significantly in this space with employers across Australia not only maintaining their commitment to LGBTI inclusion but in fact strengthening their inclusion initiatives and activities. Scores required to obtain the various tiers of recognition have continued to increase. We are delighted with the continual growth and focus exercised within this area of diversity and inclusion,” Hough said.

Pride in Diversity is part of Pride Inclusion Programs, a suite of social inclusion programs delivered by ACON, Australia’s largest LGBTQ health organisation. Pride Inclusion Programs also includes Pride In Sport and Pride in Health+Wellbeing.

This year awards also celebrated the results of the Health + Wellbeing Equality Index (HWEI) focusing on LGBT inclusive service provision. The award for Inclusive Service Provider of the Year went to Uniting, which is also a Gold Employer in the AWEI.

“LGBTI inclusion has well and truly made its way onto the Australian workplace diversity and inclusion agenda, and is starting to make a mark in the sporting and service provider sectors as well,” Hough said.

“Congratulations to all award winners recognised today on their significant achievements and for showing great leadership in LGBTI inclusion.”

Pride Inclusion Programs will next celebrate LGBTI inclusion within Australian sport at the second Australian Pride in Sport Awards in Melbourne on 12 June. Held at Cargo Hall, the event will be hosted by NITV’s Matty Webb and attended by Pride in Sport co-patrons Alex Blackwell and Daniel Kowalski, along with several other leading sporting and community figures.

For more information on ACON’s Pride Inclusion Programs, go to www.prideinclusionprograms.com.au

Pictured: Pride In Diversity Co-Patron Alan Joyce with representatives from RMIT, 2019 Employer of the Year

 

2019 Australian LGBTI Inclusion Awards

 

2019 Australian Workplace Equality Index Award Recipients

 

Employer of the Year        

RMIT University

 

LGBTI Employee Network of the Year           

LGBTI ERG, LendLease

 

Platinum Employers (Long-term Gold Employers)      

Accenture

ANZ

LendLease

University of Western Australia

 

Platinum Qualifiers for 2020            

EY

Macquarie Group

 

Gold Employers   

Australian Taxation Office

Brisbane City Council

Clayton Utz

Deakin University

Department of Prime Minister & Cabinet

EY

Macquarie Bank Limited

MinterEllison

NAB

PwC

QBE Insurance Australia

RMIT University

Uniting

Woolworths Group

 

Small Employer Gold

Initiative Media

Oliver Wyman

BlackRock Investment Management Australia

 

Small Employer of the Year              

Initiative Media

 

Most Improved Employer

Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet

 

Trans and Gender Diverse Inclusion

RMIT University

 

External Media Campaign

‘The Road to Broken Hill’ AAMI, Suncorp

 

Executive Leadership

Andrea Kenafake, Brisbane City Council

 

Network Leader of the Year

Cameron Tirendi, BHP

 

Out Role Model

Nicholas Steepe, Charles Sturt University

 

Sapphire Inspire

Caitlin Monnery-Korving, ANZ

 

The Sally Webster Ally Award          

Joint winners: Ian Bennett (PwC) & Superintendent Richard Roberts (AFP – posthumously awarded)

 

2019 Health + Wellbeing Equality Index Award Recipients

 

LGBTI Inclusive Service Provider of the Year

Uniting

 

Gold Service Providers

Reliant Healthcare

Flourish Australia

Uniting

What did EY do, to be named the most inclusive employer in Australia?

OUT IN PERTH – 28 May, 2018

Professional services firm EY was named Australia’s most inclusive employer at the Pride in Diversity Awards last week.

Lynn Kraus, Managing Partner for Advisory – and the executive sponsor for Unity, the organisation’s LGBTIQ network, chatted to OUTinPerth about what the organisation has done to change their workplaces over the last few years.

“We are super excited and absolutely humbled,” Kraus said of the organisation’s achievement in the awards. “Its an amazing group of organisations every year when we go to the awards, and this year what they are all doing is really inspiring.”

Kraus said the EY team were surprised to be named as the winner in 2018 but its a goal they’d been working towards for a long time.

“It’s been five years of really hard work.” Kraus said noting that back in 2013 the company landed in the 35th position nationally.  “To get from where we were five years ago to where we are today has been a lot of hard work, a lot of resilience and a lot of persistence.”

Kraus said the organisation had invested a lot of time into making sure that EY was not only an attractive workplace for LGBTI employees but also ensuring that the entire workplace was inclusive of everybody.

“We’ve done a lot of awareness training and education, but also brought in some partners that have helped us focus on that journey.” Kraus said citing a collaboration with mental health group Reach Out as a key ingredient in the company’s change management process.

The process of bringing in change at EY has involved everything from having a great time marching in the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras, to holding awareness sessions for staff members, and sponsoring Sydney’s gay rugby team The Convicts.

“It’s not just for employees who identify as LGBTIQ.” Kraus said, “There are also parents among our staff who have children who are coming out, and it’s created a support network for them too.”

EY have also been eager to share there experiences with other companies in their industry, encouraging their competitors and collaborates to also embrace diversity.

“There’s not just one thing you can do that’s going to make a different, its got to be everything and its got to be constant.”

Kraus said she was particularly proud of the fact that EY had been one of the first large companies to voice support for marriage equality.

“That was tough because as an organisation we went out early on and said we were supportive, when maybe that’s not where everyone was at. We had a lot of people challenge us, and question us.” Kraus said.

“We did know that we could speak on behalf of our employees and say that they wanted an inclusive workplace, and that’s what we try to create everyday.”

The Australian LGBTI Inclusion Awards, are hosted by ACON’s Pride in Diversity – the national not-for-profit employer support program for LGBTI workplace inclusion.

More than 700 business leaders, diversity champions, HR professionals and many more actively working on LGBTI inclusion came together at the Hyatt Regency in Sydney to celebrate the results of Australian Workplace Equality Index (AWEI); a rigorous, evidence-based benchmarking instrument that assesses workplaces in the work and impact of their LGBTI inclusion initiatives.

2018 AWEI awards Uniting for commitment to LGTBIQ inclusion

INSIGHTS MAGAZINE – 26 May, 2018

Uniting has won three awards in the 2018 Australian Workplace Equity Index (AWEI), recognising the faith-based organisation for its commitment to inclusivity and support for the LGBTIQ community.

The AWEI awards are an independent benchmark of the actions taken by Australian organisations as LGBTIQ-inclusive employers. More than 130 organisations entered the 2018 AWEI awards by demonstrating their inclusiveness in the previous calendar year, which are then benchmarked against other organisations.

“All Uniting community services, including youth services, aged care and chaplaincy, are backed by an organisation-wide commitment to inclusion and diversity. We welcome all people irrespective of sexual orientation, gender expression, gender identity, or intersex status,” Uniting Director Customer, People and Systems, Jill Reich said.

The three AWEI awards presented to Uniting in 2018 are:

  1. A gold employer award, one of only 12 awarded and the only non-government not­ for-profit to receive the award this year;
  2. The award for Trans and Gender Diverse Inclusion; and
  3. Uniting team member, Kimberly Olsen, was awarded the Sapphire Inspire Award for lesbian, bi or trans women of influence in the workforce.

In the last two years Uniting has also won the following AWEI awards;  the Pride in Diversity gold employer award and Best Not-For-Profit in 2016, and a silver employer award in 2017.

The Uniting Church Synod of NSW/ACT General Secretary, Rev. Jane Fry congratulated Uniting for their achievements.

“How fantastic to see Uniting recognised (again) for its inspiring work and ongoing commitment to inclusivity in all its operations. This is a real example of what it means to recognise the image of God in all people,” said Rev. Fry.

Ms Reich said that confronting injustice in order to create an inclusive and just world is one of the major aims of Uniting.

“This includes advocating for compassion and inclusivity for all Australians, including the many LGBTIQ members of our community,” Ms Reich said.

“These awards recognise Uniting’s ethos of welcoming people exactly as they are. In addition to promoting inclusivity within the workplace, Uniting teams also proudly participate in LGBTIQ community events across the state, including the Broken Heel Festival in Broken Hill, Fruitopia Festival in Lismore, and Pride Marches in Dubbo.

“Uniting Church members have also participated in the Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras since 1998, and have marched alongside Uniting in recent years.”

In addition to being the only faith based organisation to receive the AWEI awards, Uniting was also the first faith-based organisation in Australia to receive Rainbow Tick accreditation, which it first received in 2015 for aged care and corporate services.

The Australian LGBTI Inclusion Awards reveal top employers

SBS NEWS – 26 May, 2018

Financial services company EY won ‘Employer of the Year’ at the 2018 Australian LGBTI Inclusion Awards.

The event recognises leaders, individuals and networks that have made a significant impact on inclusion in their workplaces.

Seven-hundred people attended Friday’s luncheon, which was hosted by Pride in Diversity, the national not-for-profit employer support program for LGBTI workplace inclusion.

The winners are determined by the Australian Workplace Equality Index.

In 2018, for the first time, there was a significant shift in the makeup of top employers, which in the past has been dominated by financial and professional services.

While this year saw representation from various levels of government, including the Australian Taxation Office and Brisbane City Council, retail giants like Woolworths and Melbourne’s RMIT University made the list.

The energy and resources sector also made the cut, with AGL Energy noted for its inclusion of LGBTI staff.

Religious organisations were also recognised, with Uniting the highest ranking not-for-profit/charity.

Luke Sayers, PwC Chief Executive Officer, who won the CEO of the Year Award told SBS News that diversity is key to a successful workplace.

“The more diverse the thinking, the more diverse the experiences, the better the outcome.”

[click here for original article with video from Awards Ceremony]

COMMONWEALTH BANK AND WESTPAC AMONG BIG WINNERS AT THIS YEAR’S LGBTI INCLUSION AWARDS

STAR OBSERVER – MAY 25, 2018

Professional services firm EY has been named employer of the year for LGBTI inclusion at this year’s Australian LGBTI Inclusion Awards.

Hosted by ACON’s Pride in Diversity in Sydney, the event saw more than 700 business leaders, diversity champions, and professionals gather to celebrate the results of the Australian Workplace Equality Index (AWEI).

The index itself is an evidence-based benchmarking instrument used to assess workplaces in the work and impact of their LGBTI inclusion initiatives.

This year’s top employers spanned were diverse, spanning various levels of government (Australian Taxation Office and Brisbane City Council), retails (Woolworths), higher education (RMIT University), and energy resources (AGL Energy).

Director of ACON’s Pride Inclusion Programs, Dawn Hough, said the index has seen remarkable growth over the first eight years of its life.

“This year we’ve see the most significant change in the diversity of our top employers and a much higher growth in participation of our small employers which we are delighted about,” she said.

“ACON congratulates all award winners recognised today on their significant achievement and for showing great leadership in the area of diversity and inclusion.”

Twelve organisations were awarded gold employer status, with an additional four being awarded platinum status for the longevity of their high performance spanning at least four of the last five years (Westpac, LendLease, Accenture, and Commonwealth Bank).

The AWEI saw 135 employers across Australia participate this year, a 16 per cent increase on 2017 participation.

The employee survey attached to the index received 23,130 responses, an increase of 38 per cent.

For more information on ACON’s Pride Inclusion Programs, go to www.prideinclusionprograms.com.au.

See the full list of 2018 Australian LGBTI Inclusion Awards recipients below:

Award Recipient
Employer of the Year EY
LGBTI Employee Network of the Year Prism, EnergyAustralia
CEO of the Year Luke Sayers, PwC
Platinum Employers LendLease, Accenture, Westpac, Commonwealth Bank of Australia
Gold Employers ANZ, Uniting, AGL Energy, Australian Taxation Office, Mercer (Australia) Pty Ltd, Brisbane City Council, Clayton Utz, RMIT University, Deloitte Australia, Deutsche Bank Australia, Woolworths, EY
Small Employer Key Assets, The Children’s Services Provider (Australia)
Most Improved Employer TAL
Trans/Gender Diverse Inclusion Uniting
External Media Campaign Hold Tight, ANZ
Executive Leadership James Collins, PwC
Network Leader of the Year Mark Hodgson, Alcoa
Out Role Model Angus Lonergan, YMCA NSW
Sapphire Inspire Kimberly Olsen, Uniting
The Sally Webster Ally Award Melissa Tandy, ANZ

COMMONWEALTH BANK’S LGBTI EMPLOYEE NETWORK IGNITES INCLUSION

STAR OBSERVER – July 8, 2017

IN just five years, Commonwealth Bank (CBA) has gone from having no formal approach to inclusion for its LGBTI employees to achieving gold status as one of Australia’s top ten employers at the 2017 Australian Workplace Equity Index (AWEI) awards, with its LGBTI employee network Unity also winning best network for a second consecutive year.

CBA’s subsidiary, Bankwest, also ranked as a gold employer in the 2017 AWEI.

“Leaps and bounds” is how Unity co-chair Lucy Riggall describes the progress made by CBA in the past few years.

“Five years ago I would never have envisaged speaking to CBA’s senior leader team about the issues our LGBTI employees faced then. AWEI’s recognition is real validation of what has been achieved internally in such a short time,” she said.

This sentiment is echoed by David Brine, who shares the chair of Unity with Riggall. The pivotal moment for him in becoming an LGBTI advocate at CBA was when he attended his first AWEI luncheon back in 2012.

“I looked across a room of 250 people representing many major Australian organisations,” he said.

“I could see the other Australian banks, and the global banks, but I couldn’t see CBA.”

Following this experience, Brine raised the issue with a senior executive of Bank about why CBA, given its size and influence in Australia, was not represented officially at the event.

“CBA is known as a great place to work, but at that time there was no discussion about issues affecting LGBTI employees, which meant that we were probably losing talented employees who were unsure whether they could speak freely, or we were just not attracting them in the first place,” he said.

This initial trigger gave these underrepresented employees visibility, and the result was the creation of Unity, arguably now CBA’s most motivated and passionate employee network.

Its mandate then—and still—includes advocating and facilitating a culture of inclusion and respect, regardless of sexuality, gender and expression.

It has also played a key role in raising awareness of LGBTI people and issues to support CBA as a ‘safe place’ for LGBTI employees, and to enhance its external reputation among LGBTI people in the community.

Unity has run training for over 3,000 members, champions and allies across CBA, and enjoys the committed involvement of senior leaders.

Riggall believes the driving force behind Unity’s incredibly committed people is that LGBTI employees in Australia and many other parts of the world where CBA operates still face legal discrimination.

“The passion comes from a really personal space. We don’t have equality in society yet and the fight is still on. I was a bystander in terms of advocacy until I realised I was going to have a family, and I wanted my child to know that having two mums was okay,” she said.

The AWEI recognitions have been standout milestones for the three years Brine and Riggall have chaired Unity. For Riggall, another important achievement was the support provided to three bank employees who transitioned in the past year.

“One of these employees has a great network in the transgender community, and she says CBA is now known to be very supportive of people transitioning. This reputation in the market underscores how genuinely inclusive CBA has become,” she said.

Brine and Riggall are passing the leadership torch from July to Nicole Brennan and Lis Brown, who will guide Unity on the next part of its journey. This will include further promoting the network in CBA’s operations in Asia, Africa, Europe and the US.

CBA’s Hong Kong branch recently announced it had achieved the Gold Standard in the 2017 HK LGBT+ Workplace Inclusion Index, ranking eighth for its focus on diversity and inclusion, up from 15th  in the previous 2015 HK index.

Read more about CBA’s approach to inclusion and AWEI details.