Dublin Pride welcomes record number of companies

25 Jun 2016

Pride parade image by Fotosr52 via Shutterstock

Pride will fill the streets of Dublin today as the annual celebration of the LGBTQ community reaches its peak.

Dublin LGBTQ Pride is Ireland’s largest Pride parade and this year’s theme riffs on Ireland’s 1916 centenary commemorations while also paying tribute to the sorely missed David Bowie.

The ‘Rebel Rebel’ parade pays homage to the rebels of 1916 as well as change-makers in the present day, like grand marshall Max Krzyzanowski, an activist and advocate for LGBTQ rights who has been involved with grassroots organisations such as Pride and Noise.

All are welcome to join what’s set to be a spectacular parade of rebellion, celebration and solidarity, and, according to GLEN (the Gay and Lesbian Equality Network), this year’s parade will host the largest number of companies ever.

Employers from GLEN’s own Diversity Champions programme, which supports a network of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender inclusive employers, will be represented along with hundreds of employees from GLEN member companies.

Deutsche Bank, the 2016 sponsors of Diversity Champions at Dublin Pride, will be there with Allianz Worldwide Care, Brown Brothers Harriman, ESB, IBM, Dell, ESB, MetLife, PwC, Trinity College Dublin, Accenture, Dublin City Council, LinkedIn, Vodafone and many more.

The parade and festival itself also has strong support from major businesses in the city such as Eir, Sky, Microsoft, EY, Facebook, Indeed, Bank of Ireland and PayPal.

Coming out for LGBT equality

“It’s brilliant to see so many companies and trade unions coming out for LGBT equality,” said Davin Roche, director of workplace equality at GLEN.

“There will be hundreds of people parading with their work colleagues today to show that LGBT people can be themselves in their workplace and that diversity is really valued.”

The LGBT Ireland Report published earlier this year found that half of LGBT employees in Ireland described their workplace as being LGBT-inclusive. However, one in four described their company as being a difficult place to work for LGBT people and one in five straight people surveyed said they would feel uncomfortable working with an LGBT colleague.

In light of these findings, GLEN is reminding companies of the strong need to demonstrate their commitment to diversity and inclusion.

“Companies coming to Pride today send out a very important message to [other] companies, their employees and hundreds of thousand of potential customers who will be enjoying this year’s Parade, that their organisation celebrates and values everyone,” said Roche.

Applications are still open for GLEN’s 2016 Workplace Equality Index, which forms part of the organisation’s campaign to highlight best practices for inclusion in Irish workplaces, and to assist those organisations seeking to improve their ranking.

Show your Pride

The Dublin Pride parade begins today at 1pm, starting at the Garden of Rememberance and marching on to the Pride Village festival at Merrion Square. Hosts Panti Bliss and Phil T Gorgeous will entertain the crowd along with special guests Veda, Davina Devine, Victoria Secret and more, while a number of official after parties will be held across the city in top venues such as The George, Mother, Pantibar and Spinster.

Outhouse, the LGBT Community Resource Centre on Capel Street, will host a Champagne breakfast from 11am til 1pm promising bubbles, breakfast and beats as a pre-march treat, while the Transgender Equality Network of Ireland (TENI) will gather for a pre-parade feed in the Church Bar on Jervis Street.

On Sunday, a ceremony of rememberance will be held at the Oscar Wilde statue in Merrion Square at 6pm, as a chance to commemorate those lost along the march for freedom and equality. Regional pride parades will also take place across the country throughout July and August.

Those joining Dublin Pride are encouraged to dress up, make banners, be noisy and ‘rebel against mediocrity’ for the 2016 event and full listings can found at dublinpride.ie.

Pride parade image by Fotosr52 via Shutterstock

Elaine Burke is the host of For Tech’s Sake, a co-production from Silicon Republic and The HeadStuff Podcast Network. She was previously the editor of Silicon Republic.