Being able to live authentically, including at work, can have a huge positive impact on a trans individual. Ensuring trans staff are well supported, wherever they work, allows staff to flourish and shows that an organisation is truly committed to LGBT equality.
Accenture has a comprehensive global transitioning at work policy that ensures staff are supported throughout their transition, wherever they are working. In the USA, Canada, Argentina, the UK, and India, trans-inclusive medical benefits are offered, and this is currently being rolled out in further markets. Accenture’s global dedicated Gender Authenticity team has been instrumental in this work, supporting the roll-out of multiple initiatives to advance trans equality, including the development of toolkits, portals, and the updating of policies. To raise awareness around gender identity and workplace inclusion, the global LGBT employee network hosted a social media takeover in which trans employees were profiled and an Instagram Live session on ‘Being Trans at Work’ was hosted. Accenture’s commitment to trans equality is also reflected in its procurement practices, which explicitly stipulate that suppliers must not discriminate on the basis of gender identity and expression.
Stonewall interviewed Monica Boll, Managing Director and Rica Paras, Technology Solutions Architect at Accenture.
Why do you feel it is important to have trans-specific inclusion initiatives?
Monica: Trans-specific inclusion initiatives are vital because we are the LGBT community – the T is there! Marsha P. Johnson and Sylvia Rivera, two trans women, were at the forefront of the Stonewall uprising to galvanise LGBT rights for all of us. We cannot forget the trans community in our efforts to accelerate equality for all.
Rica: Trans-specific initiatives are important because this topic isn’t coming, it’s here and it’s real. We have employees who are trans, or who want to transition, or who have trans children. Trans-specific inclusion programmes are a key part of addressing systemic barriers trans people face and accounting for trans people’s specific needs and experiences.
For employers who are just getting started on their global trans inclusion journey, do you have any key recommendations for advancing trans equality in global workplaces?
Monica: Employers need to get as smart as they can, as fast as they can. There is so much to understand and it’s crucial to get things right when you do it. This is real for your people, for their families and for your clients, so you need to move quickly.
Rica: You need to understand trans identities and translate this into meaningful, strategic inclusion education programs. There are many easy first steps for businesses that make a huge difference, such as ensuring pronouns and names are used at work. This should be accompanied by a medium- and long-term roadmap of how your organisation will become truly trans inclusive.
How has being a member of Stonewall’s Global Diversity Champions programme contributed to your global trans inclusion work?
Monica: Stonewall has been so helpful with our local networks and have helped raise the visibility of our inclusion initiatives. They have been an invaluable and trusted partner in the work that we do.
Rica: As a member of the trans community and the chair of a trans organisation in the Philippines, it’s been so great to get the recognition for what we’re doing. Stonewall has enabled us to amplify that we’re inclusive of trans people, which sends such an important message to trans people throughout the world that companies really do support them.