Pride, Equality, & Investing in What Matters

June is Pride month. It has been a long fight, and we’re still fighting. A fight for equality. A fight for acceptance. 

Even with all the progress made, LGBTQ+ individuals still face discrimination in the workplace. To support companies that have embraced diversity is another way to support LGBTQ+ rights. Accenture, Google, IBM, IKEA Group, Microsoft, PayPal are some of the companies that have gone above and beyond supporting LGBTQ+ rights. 

This month, people all over the world are celebrating the LGBTQ+ community. For decades, LGBTQ+ individuals have been fighting for equal rights, dignity, and the freedom to live and love openly. We have had some wins and some setbacks, but through it all, there is hope.

Given landmark wins and growing acceptance of LGBTQ+ people in recent decades, it can be easy to forget the oppression suffered during the 50s and 60s in the United States. To be gay or trans during those times was often perceived as an illness that could be cured through methods like psychiatric institutionalization or electroshock therapy. 

Since then, LGBTQ+ people have had some major legislative and equality achievements including:

1958 – The Supreme Court of the United States acted on behalf of the LGBTQ+ community’s side for the first time. They sided with “One” (the first gay magazine in the U.S.) against the US Postal Service, for refusing to deliver the magazine. 

1961 – Illinois became the first state to make homosexuality legal. 

1969 – The rise of Stonewall and the gay rights movement. 

1973 – The American Psychiatric Association finally removed homosexuality from its mental disorder list. 

1982 – Wisconsin became the first state to prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation.

2003 – Massachusetts became the first state to make gay marriage legal.

2016 – President Obama and his administration announced it will end the ban on transgender people serving openly in the military, once implemented by Bill Clinton (the “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell Policy”).

There’s been some great progress in the LGBTQ+ community over the years. The most recent one being the 2018 midterm elections when a record number of LGBTQ+ candidates won their races. But there have also been some setbacks. The Trump administration finalized a law that will allow health care workers to deny care if it goes against their religious and moral beliefs, which will most certainly affect the LGBTQ+ community. Meanwhile, President Trump’s ban on transgender military members announced in 2017 could go into effect, a huge setback for the LGBTQ+ community fight for equality.

For decades, LGBTQ+ people and supporters have been working together to make sure the community has equal rights, and there’s still more work to be done. LGBTQ+ communities and their allies continue to build awareness around the struggle for dignity and the freedom to live and love openly.

Invest in companies that fight for human rights and that support gender and racial diversity initiatives.

Learn more about our Human Rights & Diversity portfolio.