LGBT STEM Day
Written by: Alicen Ricard
WHAT IS LGBT STEM DAY?
The First International Day of LGBTQ+ People in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Maths (LGBT STEM day) happened on July 5, 2018. In order to create a more inclusive environment in STEM workplaces Pride in STEM, House of STEM, InterEngineering, and Out in Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics Incorporated teamed up to create the event. Multiple studies (see here, here, here, and here) show that LGBT people in STEM careers don’t always feel like they’re the most inclusive places to work and they struggle to be themselves at work. However, things are changing and there are so many organizations out there that are trying to make that happen. On Pride in STEM’s website they said they “selected July 5th to celebrate this date in 2018 as it can be written as ‘507’ which is (in nanometres) the wavelength of the colour green featured in the rainbow flag and is representative of nature. If you’re in the US, then it’s ‘705’ which is the wavelength of the color red, representing life.”
They aren’t the only ones doing this. Here in Vancouver, Science World also celebrated LGBT STEM day. It happened at Science World on July 5th between 11am and 3pm, where people could check out all the awesome tables and talk to people in STEM fields. WWEST was there, talking about all the cool work we’re doing, as well as the Vancouver Pride Society, Qmunity, SCWIST, TRIUMF, ASTTBC, Vancouver Parks and Recreation (Trans, Gender Diverse and Two-Spirit Inclusion Advisory Committee), HR McMillan Space Center and the Vancouver Dyke March and Festival Society.
WHAT ELSE CAN YOU DO?
Tweet using the #LGBTSTEMday hashtag and let people know about this great day. The more word that’s spread about this, the more people it can reach, and the more the message of inclusive workplaces can be heard. Pride in STEM has also released a toolkit for LGBT STEM day that you can check out here. Look out forthe day again next year.
Listen to our coverage of the event on our Best of the WWEST podcast.
You can also follow this list of organizations on Twitter and see what they’re doing: