The term ‘ally’ describes people who believe in, and act to advance, LGBT equality. This can include straight and cis people (people who are not trans), as well as members of the LGBT community. Many employers recognise that allies are essential to creating inclusive and supportive workplace environments for LGBT employees around the world. Increasingly, employers are implementing formal programmes so that employees can be visible advocates for LGBT equality within their organisations.
HSBC’s global LGBT+ Ally Programme is recognised for both its broad reach and visible nature across the Global business.
The Global Pride Network, which includes allies, now spans 25+ countries and overseas territories. In 2019, HSBC appointed a Global Ally Lead to work closely with the two Global Pride Network Co-Chairs and Global Executive Sponsor. This Lead ensures the ally training caters to different audiences, from Senior Executives to front-line colleagues. They are also available to support local chapters with implementation.
Allies undergo training which includes information on language, an overview of LGBT+ identities, the role of allies and expected behaviours. At the end of the training, allies are encouraged to make a pledge about their future behaviour, and they are also provided with resources to keep and refer to in future. Having completed the training, allies can connect with in-country Pride Networks Chairs and promote themselves as supportive allies within their own workplace
HSBC’s global allies are supported to understand the diverse experiences of the L, G, B & T community globally. In 2019, allies in Mexico supported the Spirit Day campaign against homophobic, biphobic and transphobic bullying. A review of the Ally Programme, which will enable colleagues to become allies to bisexual, trans and non-binary people specifically, is currently underway.