Earlier this month, we shared a post on Ally as a non-negotiable. For some people, especially the younger generations, it’s easy to stand side-by-side as an ally and give the LGBT+ community the support they need. However, we only need to go back a couple of decades to a time where being an ally was sadly not the norm.
I spoke to Tom Morgan, the Head of Financial Control at Snowplow about what it was like growing up in the 70’s and the prejudices around at the time.
Growing up in the 70’s and 80’s there were a lot of conscious and unconscious biased against gay people everywhere. Homophobic language was rife, and I’m afraid I would have used it at school and with my friends. There were very few gay people on TV, and gay characters were generally clumsy cliches and stereotypes. I grew up in a very liberal and tolerant household and my parents were very kind and mindful people, but the subtle (and sometimes not-so-subtle) anti-gay bias that was so pervasive meant that I was conditioned to have a degree of homophobia.
Fast forward 30 years and laws have changed and society has become far more accepting, but when my son come out, I still felt utterly perplexed and concerned. I was worried about what bias and bullying he would face, and for a while it seemed to me that my son’s sexuality was his defining characteristic. To my shame I felt almost embarrassed telling my wider family the news.
But over time I like to think that my son’s bravery and openness has helped me to overcome prejudices I didn’t even know I had. I love him as much as I have ever done, and my wife and I are looking forward to dropping him off at his first Pride parade in Bristol next month, and on bringing home his first boyfriend. Hopefully I can put the ghost of that Harry Enfield character to rest once and for all! (CW: Outdated homophobic attitudes).
We’re encouraged to bring our whole selves to work, regardless of who we are or how we feel. In June of 2021, we did what every other company out there on LinkedIn did; we added a pride logo to our page. We actively decided to keep it up for 365 days as Pride never ends at Snowplow.