The month of June marks the celebration of LGBTQ+ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and others) Pride in communities across the country. Pride Month commemorates the 1969 Stonewall uprising in New York City, after police raided the Stonewall Inn – a popular gathering place for LGBTQ+ people – and arrested employees and guests. The ensuing riots launched the movement to outlaw discriminatory practices against LGBTQ+ Americans.
Today, CEO Mike Kaufmann, Chief Human Resources Officer Ola Snow, and Steve Mason, CEO of our Medical segment and executive sponsor of our PROUD employee resources group (ERG), launched the company’s celebration of Pride Month, and reaffirmed their commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion (DE&I).
They unveiled a new rainbow version of our corporate logo (shown above), which, for the first time, will be shared publicly on our website and on our social channels. “Pride Month is a time of celebration and our rainbow wings bring this to life. And it’s also a time to recommit to the work of achieving true equity, and to standing together and advocating for one another.”
At Cardinal Health, our value of inclusion is core to everything we do; we are committed to creating a workplace where every employee can bring 100 percent of themselves to work every day. It’s not only the right thing to do, it’s also a business imperative, Snow said. “To succeed as a company, we need the talents and creativity of everyone. As we build a more diverse, inclusive and equitable culture, we become a destination for the best talent. We become more dynamic, more innovative and better able to serve our customers and our communities around the world."
This year marks the 10th year of celebrating Pride Month at Cardinal Health. “It’s powerful to look back and see just how much progress has been made, in our company and in our country,” Snow said. “I’ll never forget how proud I was to see that beautiful rainbow flag flying in front of our corporate headquarters 10 years ago.”
At the time, the PROUD ERG was a small organization, with most members employees in our hometown of Dublin, Ohio. In the years since, it has grown into a global network with 3,000 members and allies in 28 countries. PROUD works to attract, develop and retain talent in the LGBTQ+ and ally community, and helps our business connect with LGBTQ+ communities and customers around the globe.
Mason said, “It is a privilege to serve as the Executive Sponsor of the PROUD ERG. I’m personally invested in driving an inclusive environment that embraces equality, where LGBTQ+ employees feel welcomed, comfortable to come out at work, valued and included.”
The company also has an internal LGBTQ+ ally program and provides plenty of online learning resources for those who want to support colleagues in the LGBTQ+ community. Leaders encourage employees around the globe to take an LGBTQ+ Ally Pledge – to sign an affirmation of their commitment to embrace differences and to learn. “Being an ally is one of the most powerful ways each of us can help bring people together,” Kaufmann said. “It means showing our support, raising awareness and calling out injustices. These will go far in making our company and our communities stronger and more equitable.”
Outside of the company, Cardinal Health also actively – and publicly – advocates for LGBTQ+ causes. We were among the first companies in the United States to sign an amicus brief urging the Supreme Court to support same-sex marriage. Cardinal Health is now advocating for passage of the Equality Act, which would protect the LGBTQ+ community from discrimination in the workplace, housing, public accommodations, credit, education and jury service. (Currently, fewer than half of U.S. states have explicit legal protections for people on the basis of sexuality or gender identity.)
“When we respect and value everyone’s differences, and when we speak out to honor those differences – that is the true definition of inclusion,” Kaufmann said. “And when we are truly inclusive, we stand together and we are stronger.”