Weizel Gulfan is Certified in Plant-based and Macrobiotic Culinary Nutrition, an accredited Yoga teacher, and Founder of Wellbeing at Work for Our Everyday Wellness.
Are you Bi? Is a question that has been popping-up more often in my Instagram since I started collaborating with PRIDE. Even if you’re straight, you should still support equal rights, diversity and inclusion. Another issue that is raised often is “But you’re a Christian.” Indeed, and which is why “Above all, we love our neighbor as we love ourselves” and refrain from judging.
I spoke with diversity and inclusion expert Irene Oliver Puerta of Nordic Diversify, who is a non-binary individual of Spanish decent, and it has been by far, the most eye-opening conversation I have had on fighting for equal treatment, compensation and access.
One of the biggest illusions concerning diversity is that it only serves a few. As Puerta pointed out, in some way or another each one of us is a minority: If you’re a white man in Germany who heads a successful company, you are probably expected to enjoy driving luxury cars and shamed for having more feminine hobbies like baking. If you are an introvert, you will likely be overlooked for leadership roles just because your outgoing peers are the more obvious option. Which one of us have not, in one way or another, felt discriminated simply because we do not identify with society’s ideal image?
Diversity and inclusion is about celebrating differences so that we can all feel safe to express ourselves without being ostracized. It means that your qualification to work won’t be determined by your age, sexual preference, or country of origin, and that any possible handicap you may have will be fairly assessed instead of sentenced. It is about being allowed to love who you choose and live where you want to without fear of attack or harassment. Everyone can practice inclusivity, it doesn’t have to be a picket banner on the street.
In the Philippines, Niccolo Cosme has been pioneering the PRIDE movement through The Red Whistle and Project Headshot Clinic which he founded to advocate for equality and HIV and AIDS awareness. Cosme is particular encourages citizens to exercise their rights in pushing for more inclusive legislations that protects the rights of minorities to receive equal opportunities, access and protection.