Our Continued Commitment to our LGBTQ+ Communities Around the World - How Remote Year is Celebrating PRIDE
VP of Brand, Product & Community, Tue Le, shares an update on Remote Years continued commitment program diversity, acceptance, and safety, within the LGBTQ+ community.
June marks Pride Month, the anniversary of the 1969 Stonewall riots where the LGBTQ+ community resisted against police harassment and brutality and inspired a movement throughout the world that would continue decades later.
Throughout our company’s history, Remote Year has constantly reflected on the discrimination, violence, and injustice that has plagued our society for centuries and how we can leverage our platform in creating better global citizens and, in turn, a better world. While we recognize that there is still so much left to accomplish, we have focused on doing our part in the following ways:
1. Increase LGBTQ+ representation on our global travel programs
We believe that it is important to increase diversity overall in the global travel industry and are proud that representation of LGBTQ+ on our programs is now 12%, almost 3x the number of people that identify as LGBTQ+ in the United States.
2. Create a safe environment for our LGBTQ+ community from the start
All Remote Year participants, staff, and vendors are required to agree to a strict Code of Conduct which is shared throughout the application, onboarding, and orientation process. The no-tolerance Code of Conduct prohibits discrimination, racism, and sexual harassment of any kind and violaters will and have been removed from our program.
3. Train our staff and participants
All RY staff were required to complete a 7-week mandatory DEI certification training and other ongoing staff DEI training.
All RY participants are also required to participate in a webinar and complete an online training on community behavior prior to starting their Remote Year journey.
4. Create thoughtful experiences with an LGBTQ+ focus in each RY destination
In Chiang Mai, for example, we curate an incredibly engaging experience that exposes our participants to the harsh realities and discrimination facing the ladyboy community in Thailand. Similarly, we shatter the unspoken and conservative culture of not confronting LGBTQ+ topics in Latin America with experiences that honor and support the LGBTQ+ communities through our Rainbow Tour in Chile or our Positive Impact experience with an LGBTQ+ shelter in Mexico.
5. Foster LGBTQ+ connections and resources for Remotes throughout their travels
In each city at the beginning of each month, we incorporate an overview on DEI, including LGBTQ+, social contexts and norms to ground and prepare our participants for each place they visit
On our digital Slack community, we have a sub-community for LGBTQ+ participants and allies to connect with each other across the wider Remote Year community
For the last 6 years, Remote Year has been the most trusted platform for remote working and learning globally. We have taken thousands of people to the most inspiring locations on the planet and helped our participants connect with each other and the local communities that we visit.
We have been touched by the personal stories of change and transformation on our programs. We have had people who felt comfortable and safe enough to come out for the first time while on our programs. Some came out for the first time to families and friends back home with the support of their RY community. Some met, got engaged, or married their same sex significant others on our programs. We've been incredibly honored to be a part of these life-changing moments.
At Remote Year, we have always been about community and about the collective impact that happens when we put incredible people together. Imagine the world we could live in if we channeled that collective energy towards making a real, positive impact for LGBTQ+ communities around the globe, starting with each RY program.
As we head into the second half of Pride Month, this message serves as our recommitment to uphold our values, mission, and promise to amplify underrepresented voices at every step. We are proud to do our part to continually evaluate, advance our efforts, and hold ourselves accountable to make even more of an impact for underrepresented and marginalized communities, including LGBTQ+. We welcome our community and the rest of the world in joining us in our efforts in this important journey.
VP of Brand, Product & Community