Middlesex University students and staff at the 2018 Pride in London parade
On Saturday 7th July, Middlesex University is joining the Pride in London parade for a third year, taking up the maximum possible allocation of 60 places.
Students, academics, professional services staff, apprentices and close business partners of the University will be marching. They will wear T-shirts bearing the slogan, "Our people perform better as they can be themselves at work", as a public demonstration of Middlesex's values and culture of respect for everyone, however they self-define.
“Sadly, many LGBT+ graduates feel they have to go back into the closet when they start their careers. As an international university, Middlesex is able to shine a light on parts of the world where to be LGBT+ is still either highly stigmatised or illegal. I am so proud of Middlesex for accepting me for who I am.”
— Ant Babajee
Ant Babajee, who works in the University's marketing department and is studying for an MSc in Applied Public Health says, “This will be my first year walking in the Pride in London parade with Middlesex – I can’t wait!
Acceptance in the workplace isn’t just the ‘right thing to do’; numerous studies have shown that it’s also good for business. Sadly, many LGBT+ graduates feel they have to go back into the closet when they start their careers. As an international university, Middlesex is able to shine a light on parts of the world where to be LGBT+ is still either highly stigmatised or illegal. I am so proud of Middlesex for accepting me for who I am.”
In the week leading up to the event, groups of students have been making placards with statements that they want to communicate about Pride. There was also a showing of the BAFTA Award winning movie Pride - featuring the character of Middlesex Polytechnic International Applicant Advisor Gethin Roberts, played by Sherlock star Andrew Scott - followed by a Q&A panel with representatives from Lesbians & Gays Support the Migrants (LGSM) and Queerseum.
On a University blog, twelve staff members have answered the question, 'What Pride means to Me'.
On Friday 6th July are elections to Middlesex's LGBT+ Everyone Else Staff Forum, one of a number of equality forums at the University, which is open to all staff, students, alumni, business partners, friends and the local community to help the University continue to develop as a place where everybody feels comfortable.
Last March, it received an internal award voted on by University staff for Contribution to the wider community, in recognition of its work.
Forum co-chair and Director of Global Corporate Engagement at Middlesex David Williams says, "We are all here together and we ask that each person reflects this in the way they behave, the way they talk to and the way they support others. Pride in London is a highlight of the year as it brings together people from all the communities we seek to work with. Love Wins; Love is Love; Pride Matters!"