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In the Netherlands, it is quite common that LGBT+ employees have equal rights and benefits. Globally, however, it's a different cup of tea. Local laws differ per country, local habits vary too. We always need to find a way to provide the support that some people need, tailored to each country. All while respecting local and international laws.

Our self-proclaimed Chief LGBT+ Officer, as Javier Leonor calls himself with a healthy dose of self-mockery, passionately explains: “My job is to encourage our LGBT+ employees across the globe to be active, visible, and to ensure that LGBT+ employees feel included at Accenture. On the one side, it is through equal benefits, and, on the other side, through leadership trainings. Externally, we also support non-profit partners that empower LGBT+ people." 

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For example, we helped to install the recognition that partners of LGBT+ Accenture employees have equal access to health insurance, pension or time off in case they adopt a child. In some countries, we needed to create a 'domestic partnership' definition. If an LGBT+ employee can't get married because of local regulations, but he or she is in a relationship, Accenture can flexibly extend the benefits to their partners and family thanks to that domestic partnership. 

"I am particularly proud of the fact that Accenture covers the costs of transitioning for employees, their partners or their kids in several countries," Javier says proudly. "It is in those important moments that Accenture wants to show full support.”

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"I am particularly proud of the fact that Accenture covers the costs of transitioning for employees, their partners or their kids in several countries."

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“I love to see how we can empower LGBT+ employees. Every year, we train about 250 LGBT+ employees in specific leadership training sessions. An example that stands out to me is a Greek colleague, who in 2018 attended that training. He was then the only gay employee in Accenture Athens. After the training, he managed to march during the Athens Pride aside 50 other Accenture colleagues. Now that is empowerment!”

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Besides our LGBT+ employees, we also focus on raising awareness and grow inclusion through our global ‘Pride Allies’ program. Within Accenture, we have 115,000 allies worldwide, which represents 1 out of 4 employees. Being an ally means that also non-LGBT+ employees show their support for equality. They can do this by wearing a rainbow-colored lanyard, for example. 

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"In the end, I am making a difference in people's lives. That is a very nice feeling when you go to bed every night."

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“If you are an LGBT+ applicant for a job and you are interviewed by someone with a rainbow lanyard, you may feel more at ease and more confident during your interview. And that may result in a better interview for both Accenture and the applicant," Javier explains. "For my role, I have learned a lot about HR, patience, diplomacy, influence and perseverance—in some countries it is still rather challenging to reach our goals. But I do feel that, in the end, I am making a difference in people’s lives. That is a very nice feeling when you go to bed every night.”

Accenture the Netherlands

Accenture the Netherlands

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