How did HSBC Commercial Banking celebrate LGBTQ+ pride during the coronavirus pandemic? An HSBC employee reflects on their experience.
Tuesday, June 30, 2020
This LGBTQ+ pride month has been unlike any before it in recent memory – due to the coronavirus pandemic, citywide pride parades went virtual and socially distanced.
HSBC USA is a proud supporter of LGBTQ+ equality, earning a perfect score on the Human Rights Campaign’s Corporate Equality Index for many years running. In 2019, HSBC USA signed a “friend of the court” brief in support of civil rights protections for LGBTQ+ people – earlier this June, this effort materialized when the Supreme Court ruled that the 1964 Civil Rights Act protects LGBTQ+ employees from discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity.
Marc Maietta, Vice President in the Commercial Banking Chief Control Office and a Co-Chair of the HBSC USA Pride employee group, reflects on the 2020 LGBTQ+ pride month.
Can you explain your role in the HSBC Pride Employee Resource Group (ERG)?
I just started my third year serving on the NYC chapter of the HSBC Pride ERG! I first started as the membership coordinator and recently assumed the role of Pride Co-Chair this March.
Since moving into the co-chair role, most of my focus has been on developing a strategy to further the progress that we have made as an ERG. Two specific focal points we are looking to develop are related to advocacy and allyship. We have done a lot of valuable work as an ERG in raising awareness for LGBTQ+ inclusion for HSBC employees. By broadening the scope of our programming, we can be more intersectional in our work to educate ourselves and our colleagues.
Additionally, in 2020 we plan to launch the US ALLY program which will be an internal resource for our colleagues to deepen their understanding on the fundamentals of allyship, and the value that this support can have on the community.
Pride month, typically June, is different this year from previous years, for many reasons. What does pride mean to you in the current circumstances? Are you finding other ways to celebrate?
For me, pride has always meant a celebration of acceptance of who you are as an individual. It means acceptance by society, acceptance by your community, but most importantly acceptance of myself without any preface. Everyone has a backstory as far as what makes them their own person, but during pride you have an opportunity to celebrate something that is inherent in you and that joins you with a broader community. This year, as a consequence of our current circumstances, pride feels much more personal – we’re still celebrating as a community, but this time from the safety of our own homes.
Specifically looking at significant milestones such as the passing of marriage equality or the recent LGBTQ Anti-Employment Discrimination, I am truly reminded that the world we are living in is far different, even from when I was younger.