Financial Institutions Embracing LGBTQ1+ Community

Purpose and pride: how financial institutions are embracing the LGBTQ+ community

What started more than 50 years ago as a New York march demanding equal rights for gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender people is now a global celebration of LGBTQ+ voices and community presence & Financial Institutions.

In 2021, Pride Month will be a time for advocacy and activism, a time to reflect on the progress made and the work that remains. It’s also time for brands to show their alliance with the LGBTQ+ community internally and externally. Pride Month gives everyone the chance to celebrate the LGBTQ+ community and LGBTQ+ promotions the other 11 months of the year. It’s time to dump her and move on.

Brands have long been a part of pride celebrations, and while corporate participation is visible during Pride Month, the reality is that brands still have LGBTQ+ information. A recent survey by P&G and GLAAD found that 39% of advertisers have poor leadership in LGBTQ+ offerings and ad scenarios.

Support would probably have been weaker a few years ago. According to Gallup, national support for same-sex marriage was less than 50% in 2010. When the Supreme Court legalized same-sex marriage in 2015, support was 55%. Today it is 67%.

US LGBTQ+ support continues to grow

Brands from many industries, including financial services, have kept pace by creating corporate cultures that include LGBTQ+ employees, their families, customers, and all members of the community.

Authenticity for brands, employees, and customers

To be authentic allies, financial services firms must ensure that employees are authentic in the workplace. One example is a program presented by Goldman Sachs called Straight Talk, an interactive session hosted by an LGBTQ+ ally and a member of the LGBTQ+ community. These sessions explore the experiences of LGBTQ+ workers and discuss how people can help foster an inclusive work environment. A concrete example of how this is happening at Goldman Sachs is employees using pronouns on the company intranet. The goal is to celebrate your authentic self in the workplace and beyond.

Citibank is helping its customers be authentic with a new feature that allows transgender and non-binary customers to use their chosen names on their credit cards. Called True Name and released in partnership with Mastercard, Citibank also released a television commercial for photographer Bianca Cline, starring actor Asha Doucet, who identifies him as transgender. The ad shows how a young black trans man and his girlfriend find a name that fits their identity.

Bet on the company

But building a truly inclusive corporate culture often requires actions that customers and many employees may not notice. Consider JPMorgan Chase’s Global Vendor Diversity Program, which connects diverse companies with opportunities to do business with one of the largest investment banks in the world. Investing in more providers is critical to creating a more inclusive work environment and fairer deals.

Unsurprisingly, JPMorgan Chase scored 100 out of 100 on the Human Rights Campaign’s 2021 Corporate Equality Index, which is “the national measure of corporate policies, practices, and benefits that apply to lesbians, gays, bisexuals, transgender, and queer.”

Promote next-generation leading LGBTQ + and financial service providers

JPMorgan Chase is one of StartOut’s sponsors, helping the LGBTQ + community with the resources entrepreneurs need to succeed for more than a decade. One of the businesses supported by StartOut is Daylight, the first digital bank in the United States designed for and by the LGBTQ + community. Daylight is also supported by Visa as part of the Visa Everywhere Initiative, which awards grants to financial services innovators and a special call for ideas from LGBTQ + innovators.

Daylight’s founders wanted to set up a financial services company that did not do the “rainbow wash”. They believe that customers can see an ‘effective alliance’ and expect brands to show a sincere and ongoing commitment to LGBTQ + stakeholders.

The survey supports Daylight’s suspicion that people want to do business with brands that live up to their values.

Inclusion is a commitment throughout the year.

To really create change, we need to think about how we actually talk about change and how we implement it throughout the year. It may not just be a conversation that takes place when we celebrate Pride, but a conversation that every organization should consider during the year. In fact, GLAAD and P&G found that 81% of advertisers agree that ‘unattractive team performance and LGBTQ + scenarios will lead to more setbacks than not being seen in ads.’ ‘

We believe that this recent Advertising Week article provides 360 best practices to enable marketers to reach the LGBTQ + community successfully

Be the best in your LGBTQ + stories:

White men appear in a large number of LGBTQ + advertising images. Marketers need to include images that represent the full racial, gender, and social diversity of the LGBTQ + community.

Involve LGBTQ + people in your internal and external work throughout the year:

By including LGBTQ + representation after June, marketers will have the opportunity to showcase LGBTQ + people involved in a wide variety of activities and contexts.

The LGBTQ + families represent in their variety:

Just as the traditional LGBTQ + program targets white men, marketing to LGBTQ + families is offered only if they are white and rich. There is a growing demand for LGBTQ + families that do not fit the stereotype.

The result is more than just marketing a brand. GLAAD and P&G report that 61% of advertisers agree that the use of LGBTQ + people and advertising agencies help consumers understand and respect the LGBTQ + community.

Because of the important role that financial services play in building a fairer society, LGBTQ + information marketers can offer immediate and significant benefits to LGBTQ + stakeholders and other industries.

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