Raising awareness of IDAHOBIT and the importance of LGBT+ rights
The International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia (IDAHOBIT) is observed on May 17 and aims to coordinate international events that raise awareness of LGBT rights violations and stimulate interest in LGBT rights work worldwide.
What did you want to achieve?
In celebration of IDAHOBIT, the Siemens Pride employee network and HR Diversity Office want to raise awareness of this day and the importance of LGBT+ rights.
What did you do?
Since the COVID pandemic prohibited any on-site activities, a digital format was chosen and subsequently adapted to be available to viewers worldwide. We decided on a professionally produced web TV show to transport the message. A global employee mailer raised awareness of this digital event, as did several intranet news articles and a contribution to a local radio format.
German and Austrian Pride networks produced the programme; the Siemens Pride employee network and HR Diversity Office moderated it. It included an informative session on the history and current situation of LGBT+ rights, their necessity in a business context, employee network activities and offerings, such as counselling, and an overview of public activities, such as attendance at Pride parades worldwide. We interviewed Siemens’ Chief Diversity Officer and held a 45-minute panel discussion on inclusivity, which several high-ranking leaders and activists attended.
The programme was produced in English and dubbed live into German to ensure worldwide availability and relevance. Live closed captioning was available for anyone with impaired hearing. The programme is now available internally on the MyVideo platform and promoted externally via the Siemens PRIDE LinkedIn channel.
What are the results so far?
The event attracted 2,000 registrations, and 800 viewers followed the virtual format event. Viewers handed in questions via text chat during the interview and panel discussion. And several viewers requested advice or contact information for local LGBT+ networks. We have also onboarded a large number of new activists and allies.
Feedback included a greater feeling of being oneself, representation of the community and overall recognition of the issues faced by LGBT+ people.
What have you learned?
A diverse international task force of Siemens Pride groups comprising 15 people from nine countries developed the idea while in search for alternative campaign formats in the wake of IDAHOBIT. We learned that together, with exceptionally strong support from management and leaders, this diversity of people and ideas can comprehensively develop the complex and demanding preparations of an initiative such as this.