Pride@Coles is a grassroots effort to build a network for team members, friends and allies of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) community at Coles. The group had its launch in January 2016 with a barbecue at the Melbourne store support centre. A strong turnout of almost 200 team members attended the event to show their support for the LGBTI community. Coles also participated in the Midsumma Festival held in Melbourne in January and February, with a stall on carnival day and team members marching in the Pride march.
Plans are now in place to shape Coles’ strategy for Pride@Coles, based on the Australian Workplace Equality Indicator survey. The survey is run by Pride in Diversity, a not-for-profit organisation specialising in supporting organisations to set up sustainable practices to support the LGBTI community, including best practice in the workplace.
As part of the strategy development, Coles is learning from its other diversity streams, where it is clear education has been a critical enabler especially for the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander programs. It is planned that education regarding LGBTI issues in the workplace for senior leaders and managers across the organisation will be an important part of the Pride@Coles strategy.
Community partnerships are also part of the Pride@Coles strategy, and Coles has agreed to sponsor the 2017 Midsumma Festival.