Building an Inclusive Workplace
In 2019 we developed an Inclusive Workplace Team to research the best practices and support needed to become an organization where transgender, gender non-conforming, and non-binary employees feel seen, heard, and welcomed. This team completed essential first steps. They developed a City Policy outlining requirements needed to become an organization that is more inclusive for transgender, gender non-conforming, and non-binary employees at the organizational, agency, and individual level. They also developed a resource guide to provide related resources and support; and a language style guide to provide guidance on respectful language that is inclusive of all genders.
Alder Mike Verveer has been instrumental in helping support this needed change. He cosponsored a resolution supporting and directing this work, and he sponsored an amendment to provide funding to all for training to accompany this policy in creating real culture change. As the resolution indicates, this work is incredibly necessary given that transgender people face significant discrimination, unemployment, and social stigma.
A 2019 survey by our Multicultural Affairs Committee and our Women’s Initiatives Committee revealed that an alarming number of employees who are transgender or non-binary do not feel safe sharing their gender in the workplace. To address these critical issues, our City government must transform internally to support employees, but also to be better prepared to address systemic gender inequities we often perpetuate in our community.
I am grateful for the work this team did, I am so proud to be able to sign this policy into life, and I am so excited to see the impact this can have on our work and organizational culture. In order to become a Madison that is inclusive, innovative, and thriving, we must first become an organization where everyone feels welcome and supported.