On October 11, HRC Arkansas hosted an LGBTQ Business Summit in Little Rock, Arkansas. Human Resources and Diversity and Inclusion practitioners from leading Arkansas companies attended to learn more about best practices for making their businesses fully inclusive for LGBTQ people.
Beck Bailey, Deputy Director of of Employee Engagement at HRC Foundation, opened the day’s activities with a presentation entitled “Advancing Equality through the Corporate Equality Index (CEI),” which uses data from HRC Foundation’s Corporate Equality Index to track the progress in building inclusive workplaces over time. The session focused on building the business case for an LGBTQ inclusive workplace and highlighted the business drivers for equality including the talent imperative for recruiting and retaining employees, full employee employee engagement and productivity and access to fair-minded consumers and investors.
After the opening session, Bailey moderated a panel of experts from Acxiom, Tyson Foods and Wal-Mart who shared insights on building an LGBTQ inclusive workplace environment. The panel included executives Jerry Jones, Chief Ethics and Legal Officer, Executive Vice President & Assistant Secretary of Acxiom; Deb Sinta, Vice President of Talent and Culture at Tyson Foods; and, Jane Behrends, Senior Director, Strategy, Changes and Communications and Chair, PRIDE Associate Resource Group at Wal-Mart. Leaders shared their perspectives and lessons from the implementation of LGBTQ non-discrimination policies, equal benefits, internal training and inclusion initiatives, to the value of external facing measures such as LGBTQ recruiting, marketing and community engagement.
Following the panel, the floor was opened to a robust question and answer period where participants covered topics ranging from best practices around facilities and restroom use for transgender employees and customers to the implementation of inclusive training programs. Participants left the day with new information and resources in hand to help build a more LGBTQ inclusive workplace.
For more information and resources on LGBTQ workplalce inclusion visit: www.hrc.org/workplace