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Pride Month: Celebrating Our LGBTQIA+ Voices

Happy Pride Month! We love this special opportunity to celebrate and show support for our employees, clients, and partners who are part of the LGBTQIA+ community.

We're excited to sit down with some of our team members throughout the month to discuss what Pride means to them, how their identity influences their work, and what people outside of the queer community can do to be better allies.

Meet Kasner

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Meet Kasner (they/them), one of the talented Graphic Designers at 97th Floor. Outside of their work bringing clients' visions to life, Kasner is a muralist who turns blank walls into amazing works of art.

 

What does Pride Month mean to you?

For me, pride month is validation to the queer community. It is a way to be seen no matter where you are in your journey. It validates all of that time it took to accept who you are. It validates the fact that there is a community where you belong. It validates surviving hard things that others never have to deal with. It validates the fight for equal rights. It validates all of the struggle throughout history to get to this point in society. It validates the fact that you are allowed to feel pride for who you are. It's a celebration of your existence in this world and the battles you have had to fight within yourself and within society. Pride is so important because it allows us to be seen not only by those who can never understand, but also by those who are afraid that they are alone.

 

What can employers do to foster equity & inclusion for employees who are members of the LGBTQIA+ community?

I think it's important to have an LGBTQIA+ group or space within the company. Including pronouns in spaces that allow for it, like Slack profiles and email signatures. Using inclusive vocabulary. Respecting pronouns. Really, just normalizing queer life and respecting each individual.

 

What is something you wish people knew or did to be better allies?

I think one of the best things an ally can do for the queer community is to be a voice that stands up for individuals in all types of spaces. LGBTQIA+ people have to fight little battles everyday, and it is tiring. When an ally is able to stand up for queer people, like correcting others on pronouns or calling out homophobic comments, that is really so helpful for the community. These are battles many of us don't want to fight anymore, or have don't have the energy to. It helps us feel seen and included when allies are able to be the ones to stand up for us.

 

How does your identity influence or inspire the work that you do?

In the graphic design marketing world, being part of the queer community helps inspire inclusivity within my designs. I think it's much more natural for me to consider diversity in creative work, being part of a community that has faced exclusion and minimal representation. As an artist outside of marketing, my personal work is really inspired by wanting the queer community to be seen. I create a lot of LGBTQIA+ themed mural artwork to try to be a voice in society for my community.

 


Meet Maeve

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Meet Maeve (they/them), one of 97th Floor's amazing Enterprise Content Marketers. Maeve creates engaging content and winning ad copy that helps clients reach their goals.

 

What does Pride Month mean to you?

Pride month is an opportunity to reflect on the history of queer rights, how far we've come, and how far we have to go. It's also a time to celebrate queer identity – the beauty of diversity in gender and who we love.

 

What can employers do to foster equity & inclusion for employees who are members of the LGBTQIA+ community?

Employers should make it a priority for LGBTQIA+ employees to feel safe to be out, and accepted in their environment. Talking about your partner/wife/husband/etc should feel just as natural as your heterosexual co-workers talking about theirs. Being non-binary and/or trans in the workplace should feel as normal as being cisgender. Access to healthcare that covers potential transition needs and respects them as necessary is also incredibly important.

 

What is something you wish people knew or did to be better allies?

If you assume something about someone's pronouns or sexuality - be open to correction if you're wrong, and take it as an opportunity to learn and grow!

 

How does your identity influence or inspire the work that you do?

As a non-binary, queer person, my identity helps me to understand the fluidity of the human experience. Marketing relies a lot on segmentation – this data can be a helpful starting point, but remembering there can be grey area in your audience is important.

 


Meet Bailey

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Meet Bailey (she/her), one of the incredible Content Marketing Specialists at 97th Floor. Bailey helps clients increase organic and paid traffic with outstanding copy and content strategy.

 

What does Pride Month mean to you?

Pride month for me means celebrating and recognizing everyone for who they are no matter their sexual orientation or gender identity. It is a time for members of the community to simply exist without shame and without having to hide who they are and I think its just so beautiful.

 

What can employers do to foster equity & inclusion for employees who are members of the LGBTQIA+ community?

Being a part of the LGBTQIA+ community means something different for every person. It is important that employers do not make assumptions about employees that are members of the community. Additionally, it is important for organizations to avoid tokenizing their employees that identify with the community.

 

What is something you wish people knew or did to be better allies?

I feel that one of the most important things for people to recognize is that oftentimes a person's sexual orientation or gender identity is not visible. You should not base the assumptions you make about a person's LGBTQIA+ membership status on the way they look. Some people like to present themselves more openly as members of the community while others don't and thats ok.

 

How does your identity influence or inspire the work that you do?

A lot of people in my personal life are also members of the LGBTQIA+ community and I think of them when I write. I try to avoid gendered language in general in my writing so that no matter how a person identifies they can be included in the conversation.

 


 

Key Takeaways: 5 Ways To Be A Better Ally 

1. Start an LGBTQIA+ group within your company

2. Include pronouns in email signatures, workspaces, name tags, etc.

3. Use inclusive language & respect others' pronouns

4. Consider how you can amplify diverse voices in your marketing

5. Intervene against homophobic comments or actions

 

At 97th Floor, we are consistently taking measures to foster an environment of diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging for all of our employees. We understand that Pride Month is about so much more than rainbow flags, it's about recognizing individuality and advocating for all people to live their fullest, most authentic lives. 

Contributors

Ale Caceres

Ale Caceres

Social Media/PR Manager

Bailey

Bailey Davidson

Content Marketing Specialist

Maeve

Maeve Buchanan

Enterprise Content Marketer

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Rian Kasner

Graphic Designer

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