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How inclusive are our workplaces of trans and gender diverse employees?

Dawn Hough, Director ACON’s Pride Inclusion Programs

In the 2020 Australian Workplace Equality Index (AWEI) Employee Survey, 33.572 employees working within organisations active in LGBTQ inclusion responded to questions in regard to LGBTQ inclusion initiatives within their organisation. Of those respondents 20.2% (n6787) identified as LGBTQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer). 8.61% of LGBTQ respondents (n582), identified as being gender diverse. Of gender diverse respondents, 296 (just over 68%) identified as having a trans history or experience. 40.38% of trans and gender diverse respondents (n235) identified as non-binary.

The survey this year focused on a number of questions specific to the inclusion of trans and gender diverse employees. It sought to (a) provide insight into the general perceptions of those who worked within organisations active in this space and (b) gain a better understanding of the lived experience of trans and gender diverse employees within these organisations.

This article seeks to summarise some of the key findings, however further insight can be gained via the Practice Points articles published on 3rd June :

General views – all respondents (n33,572)

We asked a series of questions in regard to (a) how supportive people were in terms of their employers work in LGBTQ inclusion and (b) how active or proactive people were themselves in terms of their inclusion of trans and gender diverse colleagues and team members.

82.1% of respondents overall supported LGBTQ inclusion activity. 91.7% felt that a gender diverse person would be welcome within their team and treated no differently to anyone else. 86.2% of respondents felt that if a member of their team were to affirm their gender, they would be supported within their immediate team and 86.8% of respondents said they would be comfortable referring to a colleague by a new name or personal pronoun should they affirm their gender.

However in terms of believing that there are more than two genders, only 52.6% agreed. Regardless of this, 78.4% said that they would be comfortable using they/their/them personal pronouns for a non-bineary person at work.

On the topic of all gender or gender netural toilets, a topic that tends to divide people more than any other, we do see some decline in support. Disappointingly only 78% of respondents said they would be comfortable with the inclusion of an all gender or gender neutral toilet on their floor even if male/female toilets were still available. Not surprisingly then, the support for all toilets being changed to all gender or gender neutral was low with less than half (46%) of all respondents claiming that they would being comfortable with this.

We were interested to see how the views of LGBTQ people vs non-LGBTQ people differed on this topic. In terms of the inclusion of all gender or gender neutral toilets alongside male/female toilets, LGBTQ people were 13.54% more comfortable than non-LGBTQ people (89.02% vs 75.48%). Comfort levels dropped quite significantly for both groups when it came to all toilets being all gender or gender neutral (65.43% LGBTQ people vs 40.53% non-LGBTQ were comfortable with this).

Lived experience of trans and gender diverse employees

Of all trans & gender diverse respondents, 427 (73.37%) identified as non-heterosexual. When it came to disclosure at work, 38.41% were out to everyone at work in regard to their sexual orientation while only 20.54% strongly agreed that most people they worked with were aware of their gender diversity.

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In terms of the inclusivity of their workplace meeting personal expectations, the responses were mixed with 50% or more respondents agreeing that their expectations had been met or exceeded in only one of the areas of inclusion that we presented (visibility of inclusion for TGD (trans and gender diverse) employees).

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While meeting expectations is a subjective experience, it can of course impact whether or not someone feels that they can be themselves at work which has numerous implications for productivity, engagement and an individuals overall health and wellbeing.

In terms of experience of inclusivity, alarmingly over 25% of respondents did not feel that they could use gendered toilets of choice without opposition and over 15% did not feel that people made an effort to use their personal pronouns. Just over 43% stated that they had been deliberately mis gendered within the last year.

63.7% of trans and gender diverse employees felt mentally well at work. 70.6% felt engaged with the organisation while 46% reported that inclusion initiatives have had a positive impact on how they themselves feel about their gender identity.

Jokes / Bullying & Harassment

13% of respondents reported being personally targeted with unwanted jokes/commentary in regard to their gender diversity, 7% experiencing more serious bullying. The majority (albeit only 60.3%) felt safe and supported reporting continual unwelcome jokes/innuendo to their manager although alarmingly, this number dropped to 58.9% when asked if they would feel safe and supported reporting more serious bullying/harassment.

In closing

In closing, while workplaces are actively doing more to support the inclusion of trans and gender diverse people, and more people are affirming their gender at work there is still considerable work to be done. On the surface it appears that there is significant support for LGBTQ inclusion and the overwhelming majority of non-LGBTQ people are supportive of those affirming their gender at work and feel that trans and gender diverse employees would be welcome and treated no differently within their team. Even when beliefs around gender differ, the majority of people are comfortable using less common personal pronouns (their/they/them) for colleagues.

Despite this, it is still unacceptable that only 47.4% of trans and gender diverse people feel safe and included within their immediate team and only 63.9% feel mentally well at work.

In addition, there is still a significant amount of work to be done around inclusive recruitment practices, in particular for our trans and gender diverse colleagues. An area that Pride in Diversity is committed to exploring further.

For more information data insights on the AWEI annual employee survey, please visit:

Are our leaders our most active LGBTQ Allies?

Dawn Hough, Director ACON’s Pride Inclusion Programs

This year the AWEI 2020 annual survey of employees working within organisations active in LGBTQ inclusion saw a response rate of 33,572 of which 20.21% (n6,787) identified as being of diverse sexuality and/or gender. This article summarises what this data tells us about our active allies (those who actively support LGBTQ inclusion within their workplaces) and explores reasons as to why others may be more passive in their approach.

Active vs Passive Allies

There is a difference between active and passive allies. A passive ally may support LGBTQ inclusion initiatives, agree that it is important work and acknowledge the positive impact that LGBTQ inclusion initiatives are having on the organisational culture – but do they make a difference to the experience of LGBTQ people in the workplace? The answer is typically ‘no’.

It’s the visibility of active allies that makes the difference

In surveying LGBTQ respondents regarding the visibility of executive allies within their organisation and other allies within their immediate work area, the results were somewhat disappointing given the focus on allies within recent years.  Only 61% of 5,869 LGBTQ respondents knew of executive allies within their organisation and only 66% of 5,866 LGBTQ respondents knew of allies within their immediate work area.

These results made us question the impact that allies were having on LGBTQ people. While initially, it looked as if only 53.1% strongly agreed or agreed that active allies positively impacted their sense of inclusion within the current workplace, that number rose to 65.84% when we filtered only those LGBTQ people for whom active allies were visible. The more visible the active ally to the individual, the greater the sense of inclusion. 

Why aren’t people active allies if they support inclusion.

68% of all non-active allies are happy to support LGBTQ inclusion passively; which indicates that the support is there. 49.5% of people who were not active allies stated that they were just too busy. 45.3% stated that they just didn’t have any interest in the area. We may not be able to do a lot about this. However, the next two commonly cited reasons for not being an ally, we can do something about. 42.8% of people who were not active allies stated that they didn’t know enough about how to be an active ally and 34.6% stated that they didn’t know enough about why they should be one. So our next questions should be:

  • Will ramping up our education or resource materials for allies help shift people from non-active allies to active?
  • Are people thinking that being an active ally requires a significant amount of time? Is this what is holding people back? 
  • Are people aware of why allies are so important?
  •  Are we providing enough information on how time-poor people can be active allies?

We filtered the data by several key questions to determine just how supportive passive allies are. We compared those who neither agreed nor disagreed that they were active allies with those who disagreed or strongly disagreed. This is what we found:

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In summary:

  • Between 67% and 83% of all non-active allies supported the work of LGBTQ inclusion
  • The majority (55%-71%) believed that work in this area had a positive impact on the organisation’s culture
  • And more than half (52.9%-67.1%) believed that training in this area should be mandatory for all people managers.


We wanted to filter the data by various demographics to see if we could pinpoint any patterns in active ally support. For non-LGBTQ respondents, women were 19% more likely to be active allies than men (66% vs 47%) with their top two reasons for not being active stated as ‘don’t know how’ and ‘too busy’. While men also stated ‘too busy’ as being their second most identified reason, their top reason was identified as not having a personal interest in this area.

Interestingly, only 77% of LGBTQ respondents agreed or strongly agreed that they were active allies. Being too busy was their top reason for not being an active ally closely followed by ‘don’t know how’. 5% of LGBTQ respondents responded with ‘not applicable’. This begs the question of whether we need to provide any specific guidance as to how LGBTQ people can be allies for others within their community and how.


One of the most interesting findings for us was the clear pattern of declining active allyship once we start to move down traditional reporting lines. The further down the reporting lines, the smaller the number of active allies and the greater the number of those who disagree or strongly disagree that they are active allies.

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We could hypothesise from this data that visible inclusivity is more important, the higher we move up traditional organisational hierarchies. We have long spoken of inclusion being a valued leadership quality and the higher someone moves within traditional hierarchies the more important this behaviour becomes. If this is correct, then what we appear to be missing is the clear message of its importance as we move further down the line. Is the importance of inclusive behaviour (regardless of the diversity dimension we are focusing on) being communicated enough as a valued leadership quality or is it about greater accountability and reward for those people managers who exhibit these behaviours within our organisations.

Clearly there is still much to be done in terms of communicating the importance of inclusive leadership. Our leaders appear to understand and engage in this, we now just need to look at how we can filter that behaviour down the reporting lines.

For more information on AWEI2020 findings, visit:

© AWEI2020, Pride in Diversity, ACON,

Permission is given to cite any of the data within this factsheet providing the reference above is utilise


Technology and design tertiary institution RMIT University, law firm Dentons and community support agency Advance Diversity Services are among this year’s top employers and service providers for LGBTQ inclusion in Australia.

At a preliminary awards announcement for the 2020 Australian LGBTQ Inclusion Awards held online earlier today, RMIT was named ‘Employer of the Year’ – for the second year in a row – while Dentons was announced ‘Small Employer of the Year’. Advance Diversity Services, which provide support services to culturally and linguistically diverse communities, wasnamed ‘Service Provider of the Year’.

Other top honours went to Commonwealth Bank, PwC Australia and University of Western Australia, which all received the highest tiered ranking for LGBTQ inclusion. Engineering group John Holland named ‘Most Improved’.

The 2020 Australian LGBTQ Inclusion Awards is Australia’s leading annual celebration of LGBTQ workplace inclusion. It is hosted by ACON’s Pride Inclusion Programs, the national not-for-profit LGBTQ inclusion support program for employers,sporting organisations and service providers. Usually held in May, this year’s event is being held on 19 October 2020 at the Hyatt Regency in Sydney.

The awards are based on the results of the Australian Workplace Equality Index (AWEI) – which is now in its tenth year –and the second Health + Wellbeing Equality Index (HWEI). The AWEI and HWEI are rigorous and evidence-based benchmarking tools that annually assesses workplaces in the progress and impact of LGBTQ inclusion initiatives.

Dawn Hough, Director of ACON’s Pride Inclusion Programs, said she was excited to have been able to share the initial results of the indices and the wonderful achievements of various organisations in LGBTQ inclusion. “This year marks an important milestone for the AWEI, as it celebrates its tenth anniversary. Over the past decade, we have seen incredible advancements in workplace diversity and inclusion. As we progress further, it remains critical that not only efforts are acknowledged and congratulated, but pressure continues to be applied to maintain and build upon what has been achieved,” Hough said.

“Once again, we have record numbers of employers across all sectors and states participating in the indices. The employee survey that accompanied the AWEI elicited an incredible response, which underscores the importance of LGBTQ inclusion in the workplace.

“Congratulations to all the recipients of the tiered awards announced today, including those the received Bronze, Silver, Gold and Platinum status, as well as those that received organisational awards. I commend all of them on their significant achievements and for showing great leadership in LGBTQ inclusion.”

Hough said she looked forward to unveiling the recipients of the individual awards at the luncheon in October, which will hosted by SBS World News presenter Ricardo Gonçalves, feature The Voice 2016 winner Alfie Arcuri and be attended by business leaders, diversity advocates and HR professionals representing a wide variety of industries, sectors and employer sizes.

“Today’s announcement of the finalists of the individual awards gives us an insight into the amazing breadth of work being done by so many in making organisations across Australia more inclusive of LGBTQ people and communities. I look forward to celebrating their achievements at the 2020 Australian LGBTQ Inclusion Awards,” Hough said.

Click here to view the full list of results, winners and finalists.

Are Australian employees going back into the closet?

This year, 33,572 employees from 170 organisations responded to the AWEI (Australian Workplace Equality Index) employee survey on LGBTQ workplace inclusion. Of those respondents, 5,413 identified as either being of diverse sexuality and/or gender. 5,276 of those respondents identified with a sexual orientation other than heterosexual.  This article discusses the extraordinary finding that suggests Australian employees are more likely to be in the closet and less likely to be completely out at work in 2020 than they were the year prior.

Respondents: Diverse Sexual Orientation

15.72% of these year’s 33,572 people responding to the AWEI survey identified as someone of diverse sexuality (n5,276).  Every year we analyse this data to look for trends in terms of experiences of workplace culture, productivity, inclusion and the freedom to be out at work.

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For the last nine years, we have found some consistent trends in regard to LGBQ employees. Firstly, the data has consistently shown that those who are younger are least likely to be out at work and more likely to be out to none. The second piece of consistent data is that the higher the organisation’s score on the AWEI (national benchmarking instrument for LGBTQ workplace inclusion), the more likely their employees are to be out when compared to employees within organisations who are just starting LGBTQ initiatives or do not have high visibility of inclusion for people of diverse sexuality and/or gender.

As LGBTQ inclusion initiatives become more prominent in Australian workplaces, a greater number of employees have, year on year, felt more comfortable to be out at work; however this year our data shows a slightly different trend.

Are people really less likely to be out and more likely to be closeted than last year?

The first cut of the data this year shows that there is a 2% increase in the number of people who are more likely to be completely closeted at work and a 17.65% drop in those who are out to everyone at work. In contrast to previous years, these findings were out of sync in terms of projected impacts of inclusion; and were alarming to say the least.

To investigate further, we looked into the differences in language used between this years survey and last, isolated data where language did not differ between the years and further analysed particular demographic data such as age and gender in order to compare those figures to last year’s figures.

Focusing on those who were completely out at work in terms of age, the numbers were down across the board but continued the pattern of our younger employees least likely to be out. In terms of gender, with the exception of those who are gender diverse, both men and women were less likely to be completely out at work when compared to last year.

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Our next investigation was to determine whether there were more employees from “gold” (higher scoring) organisations participating in the survey last year. Our data clearly shows that the higher the score on the AWEI, the more likely their employees are to be out at work, speaking to the visibility of LGBTQ inclusion and the support felt by the employees. As we did find more “gold” employees participating last year, we further extracted the percentage of completely out employees working for gold employers and compared these numbers across both years.

Once again, the data supports the finding that even within gold employers, people are less likely to be “out to all” and more likely to be completely closeted at work. In 2019 63.74% of gold respondents were completely out; this year only 43.91%. Last year 9.27% of gold employees were not at all all compared to 14.18% this year. For those organisations participating in the employee survey, it would be interesting to see if your own organisational data reflects this trend.

Another finding that could possibly impact the numbers of those who chose not to be out at work is an increase in the visibility of unwelcome jokes/innuendo and mild harassment targeted people of diverse sexual orientation (2.22% increase overall) and an increase in the visibility of targeted serious bullying/harassment (3.11% increase overall). The number of people who were themselves the target of more serious bullying/harassment as a direct result of their sexual orientation also increased by 3.02%.

On the positive side, those who are out to everyone at work enjoyed higher levels of productivity, engagement and greater positive mental health and wellbeing at work.

To read more about these finding and other topics of AWEI analysis, please visit:

This paper was compiled by Dawn Hough, Director, ACON’s Pride Inclusion Programs.

Pride in Diversity annually publishes the key findings of the Australian Workplace Equality Index as part of the national benchmarking process for LGBTQ inclusion within Australian workplaces. This year 170 organisations participated in the survey with 33,572 employees responding. These reports focus on key findings within that survey. The benchmarking instrument and employee survey are published by the Pride in Diversity Program, ACON. 

Data may be used with the reference AWEI(2020), Pride in Diversity, ACON,

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.

Uniting is the highest ranking LGBTI service provider

Originally published by Uniting, 27 May 2019


Uniting continues to build on its recognition of commitment to inclusivity and celebration of the LGBTI community. Uniting won the inaugural service provider of the year in the Health and Wellbeing Equity Index (HWEI) and retained gold employer status at the 2019 Australian Workplace Equality Index (AWEI) awards.

The annual Australian Workplace Equality Index (AWEI) awards are a rigorous, evidence-based benchmarking tool that assesses workplaces in the progress and impact of their LGBTI inclusion initiatives.

The HWEI award which featured for the first time this year, recognises organisations for their LGBTI inclusive service delivery in the Health and Wellbeing industry while the gold employer award is an acknowledgement of exemplary achievement in workplace LGBTI inclusion. Uniting was recognised for its effort in these spaces across the ageing, disability, homelessness, early learning and family services sectors.

“Both these awards are an acknowledgment once again for our work in maintaining and strengthening our commitment to LGBTI advocacy and inclusion for our staff and our service users,” said Uniting Director Customer, People and Systems, Jill Reich.

“Being an inclusive workplace and service provider is beneficial for everybody; it enriches and energises our community and is reflective of the wider society we live in. We are extremely proud to be at the forefront of LGBTI inclusion for not only our staff but also for those people that we serve,” said Jill Reich.

Participation in the AWEI index has seen continued growth for the 8th year in a row, since its launch in 2010 with a 14.7 percent increase by organisations in 2019.

“The nature and focus of LGBTI inclusion is constantly evolving and Uniting strives to expand the scope of our ongoing efforts in creating a more diverse and productive workplace so that all our staff, volunteers and clients in our services feel included and supported,” said Jill Reich.

In addition to being the only faith based organisation to win the AWEI and HWEI awards, Uniting was also the first faith-based organisation in Australia to be recognised as LGBTI friendly and received the Rainbow Tick accreditation in 2015 for aged care and corporate services. In 2018 Uniting was also re-accredited for ageing corporate War Memorial and Local Area Coordination services.

BHP employee wins Network Leader of the Year at the 2019 Australian LGBTI Inclusion Awards

Originally published by BHP on 4 June 2019, 10:30 AM


BHP Principal Program Delivery and Jasper Global Co-Lead, Cameron Tirendi, has won the Network Leader of the Year at the 2019 Australian LGBTI Inclusion Awards.

Jasper, our LGBT+ network, makes BHP a better place to work for all. It makes our sites and offices more inclusive workplaces by treating everyone with respect that translates into long-term improvements in both safety and productivity.

Cameron, who was one of the founding members of the Jasper network in 2017, said he was inspired to create a LGBT+ group at BHP to provide a place for people to speak up and bring their whole selves to work.

“It touches me that we are making such a real difference to people’s lives at BHP,” said Cameron.

“It provides me with a sense of purpose and will continue to work with our employees and leaders to make BHP an even more inclusive workplace.”

The Award recognises the impact of individuals within network leadership groups that perform above and beyond the expectations of the role and significantly impact LGBTI workplace inclusion as a result.

Learn more about Jasper and inclusion and diversity at BHP via

BHP is a Pride in Diversity member.

Media Release: CU scores LGBTI inclusion trifecta

Originally published by Clayton Utz, 28 May 2019


Clayton Utz has been recognised as a Gold Employer for its efforts around LGBTI inclusion for the third consecutive year, at the 2019 LGBTI Inclusion Awards.

14 Australian organisations were awarded gold tier status including Clayton Utz at the award ceremony hosted at the Hyatt Regency in Sydney on Friday 24 May. The LGBTI Inclusion Awards draw upon robust data and metrics from the Australian Workplace Equality Index (AWEI) and are managed by Pride in Diversity.

At the awards Clayton Utz was recognised as a true leader in LGBTI inclusion, having placed in the top three of 156 organisations who participated overall.

Gold employer recognition is the highest status obtainable for the current year, outside Platinum employer recognition, the highest accolade. Gold tier status is indicative of a substantial amount of meaningful activity in the area of LGBTI inclusion.

Clayton Utz Chief Executive Partner (CEP) Rob Cutler said he was incredibly proud of the firm’s progress around LGBTI inclusion.

Mr. Cutler said, “This reflects the sustained effort to create a truly inclusive culture for our people.  This recent accolade shows our commitment to entrench policies and practices that ensure we are properly set up to continue to remain inclusive for future employees.   We know it’s a long journey and are committed to driving change whether it’s engaging with our clients or industry and external stakeholders to advance LGBTI inclusion within Australian workplaces.”

More than 700 business leaders, diversity champions and HR professionals representing all sectors and employer sizes came together to celebrate the results of the AWEI.

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


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.