In 2021, the Human Rights Campaign Foundation expanded its LGBTQ+ workplace inclusion efforts in Latin America to now include Argentina and Brazil. Our Global Workplace Equality Programs were established to grow and promote LGBTQ+ inclusion among companies and U.S. multinationals in Latin America and recognize businesses with the HRC Foundation's designation of “Best Places to Work for LGBTQ+ Equality” or Mejores Lugares Para Trabajar LGBT for their efforts to become inclusive workplaces.
Built upon the existing Equidad Mexico and Equidad Chile workplace programs, both recognized as benchmarking surveys and reports in Latin America, and in partnership with Instituto de Políticas Públicas LGBT and Instituto Mais Diversidade, and Forum de Empresas de Direitos LGBTI+, Equidad(e) Argentina and Brazil, or Equidad AR and Equidade BR, will further recognize employers in Latin America which have demonstrated a commitment to LGBTQ+ equality by adopting crucial LGBTQ+ inclusive policies and practices for their employees.
In Argentina, HRC is partnering with Instituto de Políticas Públicas LGBT, a nonprofit created to support LGBTQ+-inclusive policies, practices and workplace inclusion. This partnership was facilitated by Esteban Paulón, a former HRC Global Innovator, who helped pass marriage equality legislation in Buenos Aires.
HRC’s Brazilian partner, Instituto Mais Diversidade, advocates and supports LGBTQ+ people in key aspects of life with a particular interest in promoting professional opportunities, financial empowerment and full inclusion of LGBTQ+ employees in Brazilian workplaces. Additionally, Forum de Empresas e Direitos LGBTI+, a nonprofit that works specifically to improve the lives of Brazilian LGBTQ+ workers, have been critical allies in successfully expanding Equidade BR into the country.
The Equidad programs in Argentina and Brazil will evaluate businesses and corporations operating in those countries based on three core pillars of LGBTQ+ workplace inclusion:
Adoption of non-discrimination policies
Creation of employee resource groups or diversity and inclusion councils
Engagement in public activities to support LGBTQ+ inclusion
Keisha Williams is the HRC Foundation’s new director of the Workplace Equality Program. Prior to joining the HRC Foundation, Keisha practiced law for over a decade. She served as in-house counsel at various labor unions, where she represented District of Columbia and federal government employees in discrimination claims and employment disputes. She also served as chief negotiator in bargaining and collaborated with high-level government officials on workplace equality initiatives. In addition, Keisha routinely taught labor and employment law courses.
Keisha serves as an adjunct professor of law at the University of Maryland School of Law, where she teacheslabor law. In her spare time, she is a pro bono attorney at the Whitman Walker Clinic and assists clients with legal fillings for name and gender marker changes.
Keisha attained her Juris Doctor degree from the University of Maryland School of Law. She attained a Bachelor’s of Business Administration with a concentration in finance, with honors, from Howard University. She is licensed to practice law in Maryland and the District of Columbia.
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