Zurich UK has received an accolade for its commitment to inclusion of lesbian, gay, bi, trans and queer people in the workplace. Placed in 96th place on Stonewall’s Top 100 Employers list, this represents a jump of 83 places from last year’s ranking.
The insurer has also been given a Gold Award for its submission showcasing initiatives including the relaunch of its ‘Transitioning at Work’ policy with guidance for managers. Other highlights include a new inclusive language training programme which is being rolled out across the organisation in collaboration with Zurich UK’s other Diversity networks. In addition, a series of virtual events on important topics featuring internal and external speakers.
The move to accept the award is bold one by Zurich, as many organisations have chosen to end their association with Stonewall in the past year or so. Among them are Channel 4, Ofsted, Ministry of Housing, ACAS, the BBC and the House of Lords. Stonewall co-founder Simon Fanshawe is now one of its strongest critics.
Stonewall has been criticised by many women who feel uncomfortable sharing toilets or changing rooms with men who identify as female. Stonewall continues to tell anyone who disagrees that Trans women are real biological women to `get over it.’ Some gay and lesbian activists do not agree with Stonewall’s aims or its activities on social media, stating that Stonewall is effectively erasing lesbians from society as it pursues a Trans agenda.
Stonewall’s insistence on policing language in the workplace is also a sticking point for many companies and organisations who still believe in free speech, and an individual’s right to hold certain religious beliefs.
David Nichols, Chief Claims Officer and co-sponsor of Zurich’s Pride Employee Network said: “This award is testament to the energy of our ‘Pride’ employee network that works tirelessly to ensure Zurich is an inclusive employer. This truly is a workplace where diversity is celebrated, and people are encouraged to bring their whole selves to work.
“Zurich Pride UK has helped to drive a whole host of important initiatives this year. These include training on how to provide LGBT+ inclusive services, right through relaunching Zurich’s transitioning at work policy with guidance for people managers.”
Liz Ward, Director of Programmes at Stonewall (she/her) said: “We’re delighted for Zurich, who’s incredible work towards LGBTQ+ inclusion this year has seen them land a place in the Top 100. Every employer has a duty to make sure that their LGBTQ+ staff are free from discrimination at work, and our Top 100 list, alongside our Workplace Equality Index helps organisations reflect on their inclusion journey and celebrate best practice. We spend much of our time at work, and our career can be a huge part of how we define ourselves. That’s why it’s vital that every single lesbian, gay, bi, trans and queer person feels like they can be themselves in their workplace.”
The full Top 100 list this year can be found on the Stonewall website, as well as further information about the importance of LGBTQ+ inclusion, and more information on how the Top 100 list is created.