Pride 2021

Sam Leung • June 28, 2021

Prior to 1962, the U.S. criminalized same-sex activity. This meant that the LGBTQ+ community was forced to gather in secret. As purveyors and profiteers of illegal activity, mafia organizations owned and ran gay bars, similar to the speakeasies of the 1920s. One such bar was the Stonewall Inn in Manhattan, New York City. When officers of the NYPD raided Stonewall Inn on June 28, 1969, it sparked a riot by both those at the bar and the neighborhood residents. Following protests lasted 6 days and acted as a catalyst for the gay rights movement.

In May, Whitespace celebrated families. All kinds of families. But we can’t celebrate families without celebrating each person that makes up a family. Our 2020 pledge to be an active #ally in perpetuity means being an ally to all minority groups, including members of the #LGBTQ+ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer) community.

Over the past year, Whitespace took time to examine our company’s role in systemic racism and audit all policies and procedures for any discrimination, prejudice, or implicit bias. Our hope was that we could improve our company culture to be more #inclusive and #diverse, and encourage our teammates and partners to do the same.

While we have made many changes, one of our biggest was to update our Parental Leave Policy. We believed our first Parental Leave Policy to be progressive and generous, but we realized that we could do better. Take a listen to our CEO’s thoughts on the Family and Medical Leave Act that the United States uses today and the reasons why we knew it was time to update our policy to better align with our values.

Although we praise the progress that has been achieved since the beginning of the #pride movement, we also acknowledge that there is always room to improve. We will continue to stand with the LGBTQ+ community and reaffirm our pledge to create a better and more inclusive workplace.

Happy Pride!

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