Flying the Pride Flag takes on additional significance this year as discriminatory legislation seeks to challenge and restrict the rights of the LGBTQIA+ community.
At 3M, we believe in the fair treatment, access and opportunity for all individuals, and are committed to advocating for human rights and removing barriers to equity. Last year, 3M signed on to the Human Rights Campaign’s Business Coalition for the Equality Act , joining other leading U.S. employers to declare support for U.S. federal legislation that would provide the same basic protections to LGBTQIA+ people that are provided to other protected groups under federal law. The Equality Act has passed the U.S. House of Representatives but has not yet passed the Senate.
3M also made a public global commitment in 2019 with the United Nations LGBTI Standards of Conduct for Business . In support of these standards, 3M joined other companies in committing to processes, policies and programs that promote equality and safety, prevent harassment and discrimination, and advance LGBTQIA+ individuals in the workplace and the community.
“This Pride Month, we reaffirm our commitments to the Equality Act and the UN Standards, and we stand with our LGBTQIA+ colleagues and community members around the world,” said Denise Rutherford, 3M senior vice president and chief corporate affairs officer, and executive sponsor of the 3M Pride network. “We stand for the rights of all our people to be their full and authentic selves – in the workplace and in our daily lives.”
Showing solidarity across communities and around the world
This is the second year that the Pride Flag has flown at 3M global headquarters, and the first year of the Philadelphia Pride Flag which includes brown and black stripes. This choice was very intentional, according to 3M Pride Chair Jaymie Wagner. “We wanted to send a visible message that we recognize the achievements and struggles of people of color throughout queer history,” Jaymie said. “Pride Month – and the entire concept of LGBTQIA+ Pride – began with Black and Latina Trans women. The most vital organizing and activism has come from communities of color, and we owe them a great debt.”
Solidarity is a key focus area for the 3M Pride network – especially recently. “Over the last 14 months, Pride has partnered with our fellow Employee Resource Networks (ERNs), 3M’s senior leadership, and the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion team to lift up the voices of our BIPOC colleagues, members and family members,” Jaymie said. “We stand with them against hatred, and work towards the day where everyone has equal rights, recognition and opportunities to live as their true and authentic selves.”
The Pride Flag is a visible demonstration of solidarity. And flags are going up at more than 90 3M locations around the world this year, the 30 th anniversary of 3M’s Pride ERN.