Pride at Cision: What Pride Means to Us

June marks the beginning of Pride month – an important time for LGBTQ+ people and allies to come together and celebrate the progress we’ve made, as well as address the social inequities this diverse community still faces globally. This June is a special one because it is the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots. Considered by many to be the jumpoff to the modern-day LGBT rights movement in the US, the Stonewall Riots mark a vital milestone in the history of LGBTQ+ people everywhere.

LGBTQ+ groups and media organizations began appearing shortly after the riots and within a few years, groups were active in cities all across America. The first Pride marches took place in New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Chicago to commemorate the riots and the response they were the catalyst for. Today, these marches have turned into parades and events in nearly every major city across the nation and even globally, throughout the month of June.

At Cision, we recognize that the fight for equality is not over. Even in the US, nearly half of LGBTQ+ employees are still in the closet, feeling as though they have to hide or “cover” a vital piece of who they are and living in fear of judgement and discrimination. This is why employee resource groups at Cision are a vital part of our company’s infrastructure. Pulse, Cision’s LGBTQ+ employee resource group, makes it clear that LGBTQ+ employees here at Cision are valued and celebrated. We don’t look at inclusion as simply a program, but rather practicing inclusion as a mindset at work.

Pulse wanted to commemorate the 50th anniversary milestone by asking our colleagues, “What does Pride mean to you?” We’ve collected 50 replies to remember the 50 years since Stonewall, the progress that those before of us have made, and the fight that is still happening today. These responses are coming from both members of the LGBTQ+ community as well as allies.

Read some of the responses below. 

Parker Guidry

Client Data Specialist

“[…] it’s not just loving yourself for who you are, but encouraging others to do the same for themselves. […] Pride is about lifting each other up, and validating all of our experiences as queer people.

I remember the first time I saw the movie RENT as a freshman in high school. I witnessed Angel, a drag queen and trans woman and one of the most beloved characters of the show, dress fabulously, love fiercely, and make the most of everything she had in life. As a 14-year-old growing up in a small town in Louisiana with little to no concept of LGBTQ culture, Angel was a representation of someone I could be someday; someone secure in who they are, no matter what anyone else has to say. Angel inspired me to be the proud and loud queer person I am today. Pride is an opportunity to be that person for someone else – to be someone else’s Angel. Because when we take the time to lift each other up, we grow stronger as a community.”

Hibaaq Abdillahi

Social Media Coordinator

“Pride to me means being a support system. Being there for my friends and co-workers so they feel comfortable to be their most authentic self.”

Daniel Ducharme

Senior Account Manager – Key Accounts

“Pride for me means the importance of making the mark and making the community aware that other countries do not have these privileges.

Although our rights are respected, people still question them and want to go back.

By participating in the activities surrounding Pride Montreal, I bring my contribution to the LGBTQ+ cause.”

Carli Claar

Senior Customer Content Specialist

“[…] Pride is being your true self—to shine brightly as you are, to encourage others with that same brilliant freedom, and to help the entire world see the incredible beauty in that. Pride is a wholeness, an understanding fostered through unbound communication and thought, through acceptance and love.”

Valerie Lopez

Vice President, Global Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

“Pride means celebrating and embracing who you are and who you love. But to me, it also means honoring those who fought and those who continue to fight for LGBT rights across the world. While times have changed and families are more accepting of LGBTQ loved ones, that’s not always the case. That’s why every Pride parade I make it a point to celebrate and recognize PFLAG I tear up every time.”

Christopher Allan

Customer Content Specialist, Support