A nationwide campaign for lesbian-gay-bisexual-transgender (LGBT) equality in the workplace has been launched in a move to raise awareness about LGBT rights and sexual diversity.


Clayton Bond, the spouse of American Ambassador Ted Osius was giving his speech in the "Work with Pride" dialogue in Ha Noi yesterday. — Photo nld.com.vn

The campaign, entitled "Work with Pride," has been jointly organised by Viet Pride Ha Noi and ICS Centre, an LGBT organisation in Viet Nam.

It aims to raise awareness about diversity, sexual orientation and gender identity, as well as to encourage corporations to take action to cultivate an LGBT-friendly environment in the workplace.

To start this campaign, the American Embassy in Ha Noi, VietPride Ha Noi and ICS yesterday jointly organised a "Work with Pride" dialogue in Ha Noi to allow LGBT activists to introduce to the corporate community ideas and tools to raise awareness about LGBT equality in the workplace.

The dialogue also served as a forum for activists and members of the business community to discuss possible venues to engage companies effectively in the LGBT movement.

A range of ideas was presented to the representatives of different corporations and organisations.

Clayton Bond, the spouse of American Ambassador Ted Osius, said, "Support from the business community to create more open and tolerant working environments helps drive greater change in society as a whole."

Cas van der Horst, deputy head of mission of the Netherlands Embassy in Viet Nam, said a tolerant work environment enabled employees to become more productive.

"That is why businesses need to pay attention to the special needs of their LGBTI staff members. This gives dignity to the individual and also makes sense from a business point of view," he said.

The turnout at the dialogue indicated that the readiness of the business community for supporting the LGBT movement was still at an incipient stage. However, the seeds for change, most notably in PwC, Baker & McKenzie, Google and KPMG, hold great potential for a future LGBT corporate movement in Viet Nam.

These companies are at the forefront and are taking significant steps to make their workplace environment friendly and respectful for everyone, regardless of their sexual orientation and gender identity.

The Work with Pride Campaign is supported by Civil Rights Defenders and the American and the Dutch embassies in Viet Nam.