The implementation of solid policies, a commitment to ongoing training and outreach, and the creation of a strong network group were all identified as the accomplishments that brought PFLAG National to name Sodexo as its 2010 Straight for Equality in Business award winner. The award will be presented on May 1 in New York City as part of the organization’s second Straight for Equality Awards Gala.
“Simply put, Sodexo is an organization that truly understands inclusion,” said Jody M. Huckaby, executive director of PFLAG National. “They haven’t just put the right policies into place to protect and support their lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) employees – they’ve gone much further by incorporating the voices of straight allies in their effort to create inclusive environments, provided ongoing and diverse training to employees at every level, and empowered their PRIDE network group to create change.”
The Straight for Equality in Business award acknowledges an organization with a demonstrated commitment to achieving equality for LGBT people in the workplace by addressing both policy and culture change.
“Sodexo knows that real diversity and inclusion comes from providing people with opportunities to learn more about each other and understand their stake and role in creating change in the workplace and their communities,” said Rohini Anand, Chief Diversity Officer of Sodexo. “As an organization, we have worked to implement the right policies, but more importantly, empower all our employees to understand issues of diversity and work to ensure change happens at every level of our company.”
Sodexo is the world leader in Quality of Daily Life solutions, with core businesses in foodservice, facilities management and senior services. It has 120,000 employees in the United States, and serves more than ten million customers daily in corporations, health care, long term care and retirement centers, schools, college campuses, government, and remote sites. Sodexo recently was named the number one company for diversity by Diversity Inc.
Since 2004, Sodexo’s PRIDE network group has been committed to providing education and support for LGBT and straight ally employees of the company. As part of its activities, PRIDE has hosted several Straight for Equality in the Workplace training sessions, including one for Sodexo’s executive-level management team.
Straight for Equality is a project of PFLAG National that was launched in 2007 to invite, educate, and empower straight allies to demonstrate their support for their LGBT friends and family. Since its inception, the program has trained more than 3,500 people nationwide through its educational workshops in corporations, healthcare environments, and communities. The Straight for Equality in Business was designed to honor a corporation with a history of advocating for equality for LGBT people. The first award was presented in 2009 to IBM.