Taking Pride in being an ally for the LGBT community

By Cindy Rose, Chief Executive of Microsoft UK

This year’s London Pride Festival was held on July 7. I see this annual event as a great opportunity to celebrate the diversity and inclusion that makes the capital – and this country – such a great place to live and work.

Hundreds of Microsoft staff will take part in London Pride, with thousands more joining similar celebrations across the world, including Cambridge (August 11), Manchester (August 25) and Reading (September 1). These can be a beacon of hope, and I have loved reading about our employees in Scotland, North America, Brazil, Japan, Poland and elsewhere joining Pride events to embrace who they are as they do what they love.

This is why Pride and being an LGBT Ally is important for everyone at Microsoft.

Many of those taking part are members of GLEAM, Microsoft’s lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender employee resource group, which has a strong following globally. Microsoft has a long history of diversity and inclusion that continues to this day, and I believe it is one of our strongest assets. In 1993, our company was one of the first in the world to offer employee benefits to same-sex domestic partners; while last year we hosted our first LGBT leadership conference, in Ireland, featuring leaders from more than 20 countries.

This year I want to do more for our LGBT staff, partners and customers. I am delighted to announce that Microsoft Rewards users can now turn the points they earn into cash and donate it to Stonewall, an LGBT equality charity based in the UK.

Stonewall has been supporting the LGBT community for 29 years, working to transform institutions and change hearts, minds and laws so people can feel free to be themselves. I am proud that Microsoft is helping people support this cause to change lives for the better.

Find out more about Microsoft Rewards

To get involved, sign up for a Microsoft Rewards account and earn points by using the Bing search engine, completing online quizzes and buying certain products via the Microsoft Store. You will then be able to give these points to Stonewall in the form of cash.

Microsoft and Stonewall share a mission: to empower individuals. Whether it’s empowering people to achieve more or make change happen, the goal is the same – to help everyone be the best they can be.