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2020 Outies: Global Workplace Excellence

Outie Awards (the “Outies”) recognize individuals and organizations who are leaders in advancing equality for LGBTQ people in workplaces globally. Outies are awarded at the annual Out & Equal Workplace Summit.

This award recognizes an employer based in one of Out & Equal’s Global countries and/or regions of focus – Brazil, Latin America, China or India – that demonstrates a commitment to pursuing workplace equality for LGBTQ employees. This employer has a robust ERG, strong ally engagement, and visible executive champions.



Long before the Indian Supreme Court struck down Section 337 – the law criminalizing consensual sexual conduct between adults of the same sex – Northern Trust India was actively building a culture supportive of the LGBTQ+ community. They held awareness workshops with senior leaders, and then pushed that out to all managers. They also launched the PRIDE ERG and elevated LGBTQ+ presenters on panels. In the nearly two years since that decision, they have continued to develop their culture with programs clearly developed to go beyond mere compliance, but are also done with an eye to impact the business and the wider society in which they operate. And the ERG is an active part of these efforts. For instance, the company conducts workshops, led by PRIDE, for senior leadership and managers – reaching over 900 leaders in the company. Since the Supreme Court decision, Northern Trust has continued to lead with more trainings, revising their benefits policies (including items like gender affirmation, health coverage for same-sex partners, and gender-neutral adoption benefits), and by sharing their experience with other companies. 


“Especially in India, companies need to play a role in fostering a culture of inclusive language which is a key to challenge the stigma around the topic which still shrouds us in many parts of the society. In addition to language, creating a safe space and building a wider cohort of allies at work will be key to the inclusion journey for us in India.”



Dow is a global leader for LGBTQ inclusion. Their efforts in Latin America are a strong testament, where (alongside other notable work) they elevate transgender employees in video messaging, have launched a benchmark program for suppliers and customers, and hold workshops at universities to spread the company’s commitment. They are also constructing a development program for LGBTQ employees. Dow’s LGBTQ ERG, GLAD, reaches 30 countries around the world with nearly 2,000 participants in North America, 500 in Latin America, over 1,000 in EMEAI, and 600 participants in the APAC region. This represents more than 12% of their global workforce.


“We are using ERGs as an important showcase for employees in minority groups (race, gender expression, sexual orientation, disabilities) being able to not only contribute to demonstrate leadership of their affinity groups, but also to be able to strengthen their leadership skills in in their day jobs.”

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Out & Equal is the global convener, thought leader and catalyst actively working to achieve workplaces of equality and belonging - supporting LGBTQ+ employees and leaders who thrive in their careers and lives and achieve greater impact on the world.