Pride without the prejudice!


28 August 2017

Image: Photo of the Optivo float in Hastings PrideOptivo staff entered a float in Hastings Pride to show support for the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) community as an inclusive employer with no tolerance for hate.

Hastings Pride officially launched this year and we were delighted to be a corporate sponsor of the event on Sunday (27 August) that gives LGBT people the opportunity to get together with their straight allies to celebrate diversity and challenge discrimination.

We’ve nearly 4,800 homes in Hastings and Rye and we wanted to show our support to the community and this fantastic town.

Romy Rook, Project Officer at Optivo said:

Image: Photo of the Optivo float in Hastings Pride“It was really important to our LGBT Networking Group that we entered a float in Hastings Pride. We wanted to show the world that Optivo is a diverse and inclusive workplace.”

She continued: “Let’s face it, we’re all unique and we want to do all we can to build understanding and support within the communities in which we work.”

The theme of Optivo’s float was ‘the beginning of change’ and reflected how, on July 27, 1967, Parliament passed the Sexual Offences Act, a significant step in the process of decriminalising homosexuality.

Image: Photo of the Optivo float in Hastings PrideThe front of the float was a prison cell with a judge and prisoners, while the rear part morphed into a garden with a sea of flowers.

Our team accompanying the float were dressed in brightly coloured wigs, headdresses and face paints. The outfits were completed with pairs of large butterfly wings that could be waved to create a spectacular display.

Kate Dodsworth, Executive Director People & Communications at Optivo said:

"Participating in Pride is a fantastic way for us to show support to all LGBT colleagues, residents, suppliers and the LGBT community as a whole.

Image: Some of the Optivo team in fancy dress and smilling at the Hastings Pride eventWe want everyone to feel they can be themselves when they come to work; we've zero tolerance for homophobia, biphobia and transphobia.

We believe our differences make us stronger and this holds the key to fostering new ways of thinking, reaching out to a wider range of people, and growing our business.”

* Thank you to Roberts Photographic who provided the images with this story. More of his photographs from Hastings Pride can be viewed visiting his Facebook page.