It's pride month. Simply put, we are taking the focus off of shame and putting it on pride. But the real opposite of shame is love. That's the beauty of the pride celebration.
But pride has its place as well...
I have worked in the nonprofit sector for about 12 years now. It's where I started my career and where I will end it. I believe in the power of us all individually and collectively doing good. But as I reflect this pride month on where my community has come from and is going to, recent research has shown me that there is still a disparity in workplace for gay men and women.
In 2001, researchers Sylvia Allegretto and Michelle Arthur showed alleged evidence that gay men in relationships earned 15.6 % less than heterosexual men in relationships.
In a study done by Gregory Lewis published in 2013, he found that gay men with college degrees make 8.6% less than straight men with college degrees. While this disparity is significantly less than the for profit sector, it is still alarming none the less.
In 2015, Joe Pinsker from the Atlantic wrote an article called "Unequal Pay: The Gay Wage Gap." In the article he notes a study done in Gender and Society that in Canada, gay men with partners made 5% less than straight men with partners. What is important about this study is that gay marriage was legalized 10 years prior to this article.
These studies not only are a cue that as the nation moves to revisit and one day pass the The Employment Non-Discrimination Act of 1944, we must still fight for LGBTQ equality as well. While pride isn't the opposite of shame, it is a feeling everyone should have in the workplace when it comes to their capacity to change and make things better. Workplaces are not masculine spaces, and therefore should not be paid as such.
Debbink has been fundraising for nonprofits for over 10 years and brings an undeniable capacity to board governance, public relations and events management. He is the author of The Governors (c) a historical collection of the political careers of 5 prominent governors.