Water provider embraces pride

June 24, 2022 BY

Diversity: GMW staff Chloe Warburton and Jenna Morris have been celebrating Pride Month at work throughout June. Photo: SUPPLIED

THIS Pride Month, Goulburn-Murray Water workers are standing up for diversity and equal rights, no matter how you identify.

Jenna Morris and Chloe Warburton both sit on GMW’s Pride Network, which was established to raise awareness and build workplace and build connections with allies and leaders.

Ms Morris, who also sits on the Water Services Association of Australia Pride in Water Network, identifies as bi-sexual and said she is standing up this month to say everybody matters.

“It doesn’t matter your size, shape, colour, gender, sexuality, or your cultural background, everybody deserves respect and to be treated equally,” she said.

“The reason that I joined [the networks] was to help celebrate and support the pride community. It is a community that is very close to my heart, and I love that I can bring some awareness to the workplace and the community.

“It’s also about accepting people exactly as they are and accepting what they stand for. You don’t have to agree with everyone’s choices and views, but you do need to respect them.”

Ms Warburton said she joined the Pride Network as an ally for the LGBTQIA+ community, and wants to be a voice for those who don’t feel “feel comfortable or safe to stand up.”

“From a GMW perspective we want people to know that we’re a safe and inclusive place to work,” she said.

“In northern Victoria there’s a lot of small rural towns where there’s often quite prevalent attitudes about LGBTQI people and it can be quite difficult to stamp out.

“We just want to show that there are safe spaces and there are safe people to have those conversations, and everyone deserves the right to be equal.”

GMW recently marked International Day Against LGBTQIA+ Discrimination with a special morning tea promoting diversity, and Ms Warburton said the company has handed out rainbow lanyards which can be seen all across the office.

“As part of our efforts to make sure we use inclusive language in our communications, we have also offered up the option for staff to add pronouns to their email signatures which has fostered some really fantastic and respectful conversations,” she said.