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Workplace Equality | Focus Linn County By Julia Freeman, September 2019 Who you are and who you work for is not always aligned

In the instance of employee resource groups (ERG), their aid has helped earn Collins Aerospace and Transamerica in Cedar Rapids consistently high Workplace Equality ratings by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation. According to representatives of each company, the visibility of LGBTQ+ employees is what sets them apart from other workplaces in the Corridor. The premise of ERGs are spaces where “employees can meet together and offer support, insight, and suggestions with each other and to the company’s management team,” said Matt Van Maanen. The visibility of groups such as Transamerica Proud make him feel embraced beyond just his role as a lead data security analyst. According to Amanda Green, “because Pride ERG exists, we’re able to provide a compassionate, educated response to the inquiries and if we don’t already have the information they’re seeking, we find someone who does,” in navigating the Collins Aerospace system. In 2005, Collins was one of the first major corporations to offer Domestic Partnership benefits. This played a major role in recruitment of talent from across the country for the organization. Also the influence is not lost on any level of Collins Aerospace as Collins Aerospace is the largest single employer in Cedar Rapids. “We serve as role models and set the competitive bar for other corporations, both inside and outside of our industry. This means, when the public hears that Collins is the main sponsor for CR Pridefest, or they see our rainbow flags displayed on every building for Pride Heritage Month, they see our values. We get many compliments from the public, including other companies, thanking us for setting a positive, inclusive example for our community & our youth,” explained Lead Tech and cofounder of Collins’ Pride ERG Green. PROUD is just one of nine ERGs within TransAmerica that target specific populations of employees. They are DIMENSIONS (Diverse Abilities Partnering Together), GENS (Generations Network), PROUD (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender & Allies), RISE (Asian Affinity Network), SALUTE (Veterans Network), SPECTRUM (Multicultural Network), TECH (People Using Technology), WIN (Women’s Impact Network), XPATS (Expatriate Network). “Employee Resource Groups are intended to foster connections and a sense of community that assists in attracting, building, and retaining an inclusive workforce,” added Cindy Nodorft,Transamerica’s inclusion and diversity program manager. [Continued on next page]

Profile for GoGuide Iowa City

September 2019 GoGuide Magazine  

Workplace Equality issue with Senator Amy Klobuchar interview as part of ongoing GoGuide Election Guide

September 2019 GoGuide Magazine  

Workplace Equality issue with Senator Amy Klobuchar interview as part of ongoing GoGuide Election Guide