Happy Pride Month! We are incredibly excited to highlight one of our Employee Resource Groups (ERGs), Pride Group! Internal Recruiting Administrator Nick Barbarossa is one of Pride’s Leaders! We cannot wait to see how Nick continues to grow the ALKU Pride Group! Check out the answers Nick provided below in celebration of Pride Month!
What do you hope the future of Pride will bring?
I hope that the future of Pride will continue to uphold a safe space for those who identify as LGBTQIA+ and those who don’t, find ways to be an ally and show up for our community. I hope others will continue to get involved with our ERG and help us impact our local communities, so we can also create those safe spaces outside of the workplace.
What is your favorite Pride anthem?
LGBT by Cupcakke (Explicit)
Born this way by Lady Gaga.
What does Pride month mean to you, and how do you celebrate?
Pride month is a time for reflection, celebration, and action. I think it is important to remember that Pride exists year-round, as do we. Pride month is a time for everyone to unite, join forces, and continue fighting for human rights. Pride month is often seen as performative, with companies displaying a rainbow flag for 30 days and returning to business as usual on July 1st. Each year during Pride month, we have a spotlight on us to educate, inform, and celebrate. It can become overwhelming, but our impact on our communities, states, and world can be huge, and it is up to us as LGBTQIA+ people to come together and be proud of who we are.
As a member of the LGBTQIA+ community, how can others be a better ally to employees in this ERG?
As a member of the LGBTQIA+ community, others can take simple actions to be better allies to the employees of the Pride ERG. The first step in being in ally is showing up for us, attending our open meeting, learning more about what we planned for the company, and hearing our stories. Learn more about LGBTQIA+ issues in politics, the “Don’t say Gay” bill is being discussed in southern states, and we need allies to come together to fight for our rights. Supporting LGBTQIA+ owned businesses is also a great way to show your support for our community; supporting artists and donating to an LGBTQIA+ organization are also great ways to show allyship.
Who are some of your LGBTQIA+ role models?
Some role models of mine in the LGBTQIA+ community are:
Lady Gaga- Lady Gaga identifies as bisexual and advocates for LGBTQIA+ people and their rights. She has created the “Born This Way Foundation” to spread kindness and provide youth with a support system. Although the organization isn’t specific to LGBTQIA+ people, Lady Gaga has shown she hears us and supports us.
Marsha P. Johnson- Marsha was a transgender woman and human rights activist who was said to be the one who allegedly “threw the first brick at the stonewall uprising.” The stonewall uprising started as a peaceful protest to combat the police brutality that LGBTQIA+ people faced in the decades following. Marsha was someone who believed in making a change in the world to put an end to the hate LGBTQIA+ people face daily. Marsha inspires me to continue fighting for human rights, remain resilient, and let our voices be heard.
For ALKU’s LGBTQIA2S+ employees to share experiences, provide fellowship and support, enhance career and personal development, and contribute to ALKU’s vision and values. This group is a safe space to meet and discuss life inside and outside ALKU.