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Celebrating diversity during Pride month and beyond

york pride
As we approach the end of Pride Month, Inclusion and Diversity manager Ali Beresford reflects on the work being done to support our colleagues from the LGBT+ communities to thrive here at Nestlé UK and Ireland.

Pride month for me is an important part of our year. LGBT+ inclusion is one of our four global focus areas in inclusion and diversity. We take the opportunity to celebrate diversity, raise awareness and stand proudly with our LGBT+ colleagues.

Things have come a long way since a conversation between two colleagues over coffee almost five years ago led to the LGBT+ network being formed. Whilst there's still more to do, in the last year, we have made great strides supporting our colleagues to bring their best self to work.

I’m delighted that we published our Trans Inclusion Policy in July 2020 which ensures our Trans and non-binary colleagues are treated with dignity and respect at work, raising awareness and providing information. We have also offered the opportunity to learn more through our discussion sessions, training and resources, alongside changing our processes to include non-binary gender identities. I’m particularly thankful for the support of our LGBT+ colleagues and allies who have passionately worked with us to make sure we get it right.

I am also thrilled that Nestlé UK and Ireland has been nominated in the Inclusive Employer or Company category at the British LGBT Awards 2021. It’s such an honour to be recognised at this level and is testament to the work we have been doing. It is also our second nomination at these awards, as last year our LGBT+ network was nominated in the top 10.

We have been busy during Pride Month! We celebrated with Dublin Pride, as well as welcomed the LGBT Foundation and akt to talk about inclusive language and the importance of supporting young people from the LGBT+ communities. We are delighted to have been able to raise some much needed funds for akt’s work. We connected with global colleagues on our Leading Together for LGBT+ inclusion webcast and have collaborated with Tesco and Johnson & Johnson as part of our sponsorship of the D&I in Grocery network, sharing our collective learning across the industry. Finally, we held our virtual Pride event. Whilst we couldn’t be together in person, we made the most of the opportunity to connect and celebrate virtually, featuring appearances from the London Gay Big Band. We also worked with our trusted partner Sodexo to involve our factory and logistics colleagues through poster and a range of Pride inspired food in our factory canteens.

There is more to do and our work continues. Being inclusive and representing all of our consumers is such a vital part of being the world’s largest food and drink organisation. We embrace our responsibility to drive change for our colleagues now, and for our future generations.