Supporting The LGBT Community This Pride Month
It’s pride month and here at ASSET, we are proud to be allies of the LGBTQIA+ community.
As with any other industry, security is a diverse collection of people coming from different backgrounds and there are many wonderful security professionals who are proud members of the LGBTQIA+ community.
In honour of those individuals, we wanted to help any other allies in the industry out there know when to step up and step in to support the LGBTQIA+ community this pride month.
In security there are a lot of different ways in which you help people.
- You keep them calm in emergency
- You administer first aid
- You help people work out where they need to go and how to get there
But one of the most important ways in which you help people is by making people feel safe. Part of the job of a security guard is acting as an authority to stand against people breaking the rules and this includes hate speech and discrimination.
This is why it’s so important in a position of authority like this to know how you can support the LGBTQIA+ community. We’ve got suggestions below for how you can step up and show your support for the community this pride month.
One of the first steps to being an ally to the LGBT community is to take the time and energy to educate yourself. Try to understand some of the struggles they have faced and still face, and how you can support them.
Finding reputable sources such as Reach out and the Pride Foundation can help. But the other way to broaden your horizons and learn a bit more holistically is to start following more diverse people on social media – there might be a queer personality on YouTube or Instagram that you can learn a bit more from. Diversifying your feed brings new perspectives to you everyday.
When you hear derogatory comments or hate speech happening step in and speak up. As security guards, you are in the unique position of holding authority in your workplace. And this is a position you can use to your own advantage when calling out discrimination.
Be a visible ally
Speaking up when someone does the wrong thing is important but on a smaller scale, conversations that help educate and enlighten those around you are helpful too. Discussing issues that LGBT folk face in everyday settings can help to shift someone’s perception and get them thinking differently.
Learn the Language
Understanding the terms and knowing what is and isn’t appropriate to say to a member of the LGBT community is important. Sometimes the difference between hurting someone and helping them is a single word. Doing a bit of research and understanding what each term means, which ones to use and how to ask questions without overstepping the line will make a difference.
Don’t out someone
Being queer in today’s world is certainly less fraught with danger than it has been in years past. The rights and respect that queer people have today is hard won by the generations that preceded them. But the queer experience is still a marginalised one.
With this in mind, please don’t out your queer friends. If you know someone is queer and they have told you this, never assume it is okay to tell other people. It’s not your place and it could make this person feel unsafe. The LGBT community still faces discrimination and hate crimes, it’s important not to out someone, it could affect their lives.
We hope these tips were helpful.