Why do you celebrate Pride and what makes it important for you to celebrate it? I celebrate Pride because there are still people who think we are overacting all time. We needed, and we still do need, to fight hard just for the fact of other people recognizes us as just another regular human being, we need to ask for respect. From the fact that this is something we haven't chosen, we can't (and we don't want) change and ultimately what I do in privacy in the end shouldn't bother anyone else... why should I need to explain this to people over and over and over again? We just wish a world where no one stares at us as queer individuals but like anyone else.
How would you describe your experience as a queer person in the workplace? I have a lot of experiences I can share here as I've been working in different companies, environments, etc... In my journey I've found all kind of people. I will speak about them in 3 different blocks:
People who's aware, informed and have been respectful to me all time.
People who knows about, respects, but they still have questions (I'm annoyed to be answering them many times already) and sometimes comments our of the context.
People who still find us weird and the interaction usually it's weird or they spread homophobic comments in common areas, etc...
Luckily the 3rd groups it's being less and less common thanks to companies and visibility. I never hide myself anymore but on the other hand I do not spread my sexual orientation straight away, no ones introduces themselves saying: "I'm X and I'm straight" so I don't need to do the same. Simply people knows with the time.
Would you be comfortable sharing any learnings from your journey as a queer person that might inspire your co-workers? Sure thing. In the end, the "Journey" as the questions states needs to be experienced. I can warn anyone about A-B-C things but you need to feel it in your bones to understand what's going on. Said that I will always encourage everyone to be their own self 100% all time because why shouldn't we? Nothing is wrong with us, we just do whatever we feel in the inside and if this is loving someone from your own gender, then this what you must do as the free individuals we are. A lot of people does bad or weird comments trying to make a joke out of it. If you don't feel comfortable, let them know. I'm sick of some comments like: "Ah but you doesn't look gay". May I take this as a compliment..? What do want to tell me with this? I try to make my colleagues understand that in the end, this kind of comments and observations a bit homophobic and we don't like them. This not only applies for the LGTBIQ+ collective but to everyone. Do whatever you feel/like/want to do all time. If you don't actively disturb anyone by doing what makes you happy, could this be wrong in any scenario I wonder? You're as great, gorgeous, capable, sexy as any other individual. You can do the same things as any other person and never allow anyone to tell you anything different.
If Fourthline could do one thing better to be more inclusive for Queer people, what would that be? Honestly FL it's one of the best companies I've ever worked with in that regard. The company is inclusive and supports on all the LGTBIQ+ events. We still have some pink sheep around that says some homophobic stuff around but I guess I need to tolerate them as we need to work in the same environment.
How do you look back on participating in this initiative and what do you hope it brings/enables? As I said at the beginning I believe we need to make us heard around as many times as we can voice ourselves out. There's still a lot of countries where just being LGTBIQ+ it's a problem and you can be processed by court or even worse... get killed (How can it be in 2023!?) by something we haven't chosen and we can't change! Come one! Some psychologists consider us mentally sick people while no one has demonstrated that anyone can be healed... because it's not a sickness, we're 100% OK regarding health. Because of this and many other stories I can add, I'm always up for anything that can give more comprehension and help other people to respect our freedom.