LGBTQ+ Pride Month 2019: Springer Nature staff share their stories

The Source
By: Guest contributor, Wed Jul 3 2019

Author: Guest contributor

This week we're sharing stories from members of Springer Nature's employee network for LGBTQ+ staff and allies, SN Pride. In honor of SN Pride's first anniversary. Read more from Springer Nature staff below and check back for new stories every day this week here on The Source.

Written by Ben Johnson, PhD

Head of Communities & Engagement, Springer Nature

Many researchers study the importance of diversity, whether of the human microbiome, in ecology, or in complex systems. It is increasingly recognised that diversity in the workplace also has many benefits. June is generally known as LGBTQ+ Pride month, Friday 5th July is LGBTSTEM day, and this week also marks a little over a year since colleagues at Springer Nature formed an employee network for LGBTQ+ staff and allies, SN Pride.

Being LGBTQ+ at work is a double-edged sword compared to most other under-represented minorities or disadvantaged groups: we can sometimes choose to remain hidden. This might be perceived as a strength, but can in fact be a curse, as we find ourselves constantly deciding whether to come out to new colleagues or clients, when answering seemingly innocuous questions about our personal lives. In a successful business, all colleagues should feel comfortable talking about their lives outside of work, including what they did at the weekend, and who their partners are.

As part of SN Pride, we started a blog on our staff intranet to tell our personal stories – and they turned out to be very personal. Through understanding the experience of being LGBTQ+ at work, we wanted to educate, inform and guide in how best to support colleagues and how to make everyone feel comfortable at work, regardless of gender identity or sexual orientation.

SN Pride aims to help all of its members feel accepted, supported and included, working together with the wider LGBTQ+ community in the fields of research and education wherever we can. We started the blog with the full knowledge that LBGTQ+ rights are limited in many parts of the world, and same sex relationships are illegal in some countries where we do business, or have offices. The response to the blog series has been phenomenal, with supportive comments from LGBTQ+ staff and allies from across the world.

We now share a selection of blog posts with the wider research community on The Source, in the hope that this will raise awareness and foster understanding more widely.

We want to thank all those staff who have contributed to the blog and shared their personal stories. We hope you will find them informative and useful. And for those of you based in London – look out for Springer Nature staff on the London Pride march this Saturday!

Read more stories from Springer Nature Staff now: 

Coming Out by Andy Monica

Beyond the Binary by Laura de Kreij

Stonewall 50: A personal reflection by William Curtis, PhD

You might not know me by an employee of Springer Nature​​​​​​​


Author: Guest contributor

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