I am proud to announce that for the third consecutive year, Southwest Airlines earned 100 percent on Human Rights Campaign Foundation’s 16th Annual Scorecard on LGBTQ Workplace Equality!
The Corporate Equality Index (CEI), a national benchmarking survey and report on corporate policies and practices related to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) workplace equality, administered by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation. Southwest Airlines joins the ranks of more than 600 major U.S. businesses that also earned top marks this year.
The 2018 CEI rated businesses in the report, which evaluates LGBTQ-related policies and practices including non-discrimination workplace protections, domestic partner benefits, transgender-inclusive health care benefits, competency programs and public engagement with the LGBTQ community. Southwest Airlines’ efforts in satisfying all of the CEI’s criteria results in a 100 percent ranking and the designation as a Best Place to Work for LGBTQ Equality.
At Southwest Airlines, we put People first, and I'm proud to have a work environment where our Employees can come as they are and have their unique perspectives celebrated.
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For the second consecutive year, Southwest Airlines earned the distinction of being a “Best Place to Work for LGBT Equality” for receiving a perfect rating of 100 from the Human Rights Campaign Foundation on the 2017 Corporate Equality Index.
I am very proud that Southwest has been named as a Best Place to Work for LGBT Equality for the second year in a row. We are dedicated to continuing to provide our LGBT Employees—and all of our Employees—with a great work environment where they can not only be themselves; they are celebrated for being themselves.
This recognition reflects Southwest’s continuous efforts to put Employees first, offer great benefits, and positively impact the communities we serve. Southwest Airlines has been a longtime supporter of the LGBT community and is proud of the continued community relationships it has with organizations that are working hard to make a positive difference in the lives of the LGBT community.
The 2017 CEI rated 1,043 businesses in the report, which evaluates LGBT-related policies and practices including non-discrimination workplace protections, domestic partner benefits, transgender-inclusive health care benefits, competency programs, and public engagement with the LGBT community.
For more information on the 2017 Corporate Equality Index, or to download a free copy of the report, visit www.hrc.org/cei.
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Each year, Latina Style 50 analyzes corporate America's efforts to promote diversity and provide career advancement opportunities for Hispanic women. Southwest Airlines is proud to be listed as one of The 50 Best Companies for Latinas to Work for in the U.S.!
Southwest Airlines has always been committed to People. We are passionate about providing our Employees a work environment where they have the freedom to bring their whole selves to work and are celebrated for who they are. While we enjoy the opportunity to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month, we are dedicated to celebrating our Employees’ diverse cultures throughout the year. Not only is Southwest Airlines dedicated to hiring diverse candidates, we are also passionate about investing in the careers of our Employees and providing them with the tools they need to achieve success at Southwest Airlines.
In addition to our commitment to be a “Best Place to Work” for our Employees, we are dedicated to supporting the communities we serve. Southwest supports nonprofit organizations that are dedicated to making a positive difference in the Latino community. From making higher education attainable for students with financial limitations to celebrating Latino Arts and Culture, Southwest is committed to the Latino community.
Tell us how you’re celebrating Hispanic Heritage this month!
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I’m really excited that today we’re able to announce that Southwest Airlines achieved a perfect score of 100 from the Human Rights Campaign Foundation in their 2016 Corporate Equality Index.
The Human Rights Campaign Foundation’s 2016 Corporate Equality Index is the national benchmarking tool on corporate policies and practices pertinent to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) employees. This perfect score also earns us the distinction of being a “Best Place to Work for LGBT Equality.”
For me personally, it means we’ve been recognized as a Company dedicated to being a top place to work for our LGBT Employees, and our actions continue to show that. We’re committed to hiring and retaining diverse talent and we believe that one of the best ways to do that is to ensure Southwest Airlines offers industry-leading pay and best-in-class benefits to our Employees, and creates an environment where all our Employees feel valued and appreciated.
I’m so proud to work for a Company that puts People first by offering great benefits to all Employees and that we positively impact the communities we serve. Southwest has been a longtime supporter of the LGBT community and we’re dedicated to continue providing Employees with a wonderful workplace where they can be themselves.
The 2016 CEI rated 1,027 businesses in the report, which evaluates LGBT-related policies and practices including non-discrimination workplace protections, domestic partner benefits, transgender-inclusive health care benefits, competency programs, and public engagement with the LGBT community. Southwest’s efforts in satisfying all of the CEI’s criteria results in a 100 percent ranking and the designation as a Best Place to Work for LGBT Equality.
For more information on the 2016 Corporate Equality Index, or to download a free copy of the report, visit www.hrc.org/cei.
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My favorite Martin Luther King, Jr. quote is:
"People fail to get along because they fear each other; they fear each other because they don't know each other; they don't know each other because they have not communicated with each other."
At Southwest Airlines, we have always had a Culture of treating each other and out Customers like Family. As our Employee and Customer base continues to grow, it’s important that we continue to take time to get to know each other and celebrate what makes each of us unique. As the Vice President of Diversity & Inclusion, I enjoy the opportunity to host events where Southwest Employees can take time to communicate and learn more about how the diversity of each Employee’s talent and experience contributes to the success of our Company. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s words have inspired me to plan events like our Diversity Summit where we encouraged participants to engage in honest and open conversations with each other. This genuine interest in others translates to our Legendary Customer Service and to strengthening the communities we serve.
I hope today will serve as a great reminder that we need to continue to communicate with each other and get to know each other so that we can appreciate and value one another.
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Each day when I come to work and walk through Southwest’s doors, I bring my whole self to work. In other words I feel comfortable being uniquely me. At Southwest, diversity is more than a word—it’s the fabric within our Culture—from the first click on southwest.com to our Employees greeting and serving Customers at the airport and onboard our flights, our multi-faceted workforce is our greatest asset. This is why I’m proud to share that we are continuing the conversation about diversity and inclusion by holding our fourth annual award-winning Diversity Summit on August 1 at our Dallas Headquarters. Themed “Reframe the Dialogue,” Southwest Employees will join corporate executives, HR professionals, and community leaders to talk about how a strong spirit of diversity and inclusion can impact the performance of a company, foster innovation, and bring a community together. If you’re interested in joining the conversation and attending the Summit, please register here as soon as possible since seating is limited. Some of our very own Leaders like Gary Kelly, Colleen Barrett, Jeff Lamb, Bob Jordan, and Teresa Laraba will share how Southwest is reframing the dialogue on diversity and inclusion and why it’s always been the recipe for Southwest’s success. The complete list of 2013 speakers is attached below. The Southwest Airlines Diversity Summit was created and is hosted by our Diversity Council. Formed in 2007, the Council is comprised of Southwest Employees with all aspects of talents, skills, and unique perspectives who have stepped forward to volunteer their time to serve as a strategic asset dedicated to influencing an environment that celebrates differences and champions inclusion. I’ve heard people say when they begin their journey at Southwest that they’ve worked for companies for 20 years and never felt as welcomed as they do on their first day. At the LUV airline, we Live The Southwest Way by acknowledging the value of the diversity all of our Employees bring to the Southwest Family. I couldn’t be more proud to work in an inclusive environment of trust where individuals are welcomed, valued, and appreciated. I hope you’ll be able to join us at this year’s Diversity Summit as we celebrate the differences that make us strong and how a respectful and inclusive environment brings out the best in us all. If you aren’t able to join us for the Summit on Aug. 1, stay tuned to NUTS for highlights of the Summit in the coming weeks.
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A few weeks ago Southwest Airlines hosted its 3rd Annual Diversity Summit, a day dedicated to celebrating the unique perspectives that we all bring to our Company, our country, and our world. As Vice President of Diversity and Inclusion, it gives me great pleasure to host an event that was attended by more than 200 participants from all across the country, as well as by many of our Southwest Leaders and Employees. I am grateful to our Diversity Council and the many volunteer Employees who helped make this our most successful and well-attended Diversity Summit to date. The theme of this year’s Diversity Summit was “LUVing Employees, LUVing Communities” and after a brief introduction, all eyes were on SVP Culture & Communications, Ginger Hardage, who took the audience through our unique Southwest Culture. Next, Gary spoke about Southwest’s commitment to Diversity and Inclusion. The keynote address for the Summit was delivered by Veronica Biggins, a member of our Board of Directors. Veronica detailed her life’s journey and the lessons learned along the way from mentors and others about “including all” and fostering an environment of inclusion in the workplace. Johnny Humphrey and Brandi Garcia from the Resource Center of Dallas spoke about greater LGBT inclusion in the workplace, and Deepa Iyer, Executive Director of SAALT (South Asian Americans Leading Together) spoke about connecting with our Asian-American Employees and Community. The afternoon session ended with Angeles Valenciano from the Texas Diversity Council who spoke about diversity, inclusion, and engagement as a winning formula for a Company’s success. By this point, participants of the Summit were already engaged, inspired and motivated by what they had seen and heard and by the great networking that was already taking place. Little did they know the treat that lay ahead—hearing from President Emeritus Colleen Barrett on “living The Golden Rule” and making Southwest the best place to work. Colleen’s talk was followed by a panel discussion that included Director of Culture Services, Cheryl Hughey; Director Community Relations and Charitable Giving, Debra Benton, and Senior Manager Community Affairs and Grassroots Laura Nieto. The panelists spoke about the practical applications of the Summit’s theme and the panel was moderated by Vice President Communication & Strategic Outreach, Linda Rutherford. Closing remarks for the Summit were delivered by Executive Vice President and Chief People & Administrative Officer Jeff Lamb, as he challenged participants to apply what they had heard from the day’s sessions and create their own diversity and inclusion flight plan. It goes without saying that the speakers we had for the Summit inspired and motivated participants in a profound way. I encourage you, in your own workgroups and circles of influence, to reach out and seek to understand perspectives different from your own and, in so doing, to make Southwest Airlines a more inclusive and welcoming environment for us all.
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For me, freedom means the ability to be uniquely you. When I think about Independence Day, I think about freedom. On July 4, 1776, the people of the United States adopted the Declaration of Independence and declared freedom from Great Britain. Since that day, Americans have fought hard for the many other freedoms we enjoy today. For example, on August 26, 1920, women won the right to vote, a right that took nearly 100 years to win. Later, the Civil Rights Act of 1964 was passed banning discrimination based on "race, color, religion, or national origin" in employment practices and public accommodations. Today, Southwest Airlines is proud to support many organizations that empower diverse communities in all of the cities we serve. Our 46,000 Employees who serve the more than 100 million people who fly Southwest Airlines each year reflect the great diversity of our country and our Company. As a Company focused on low costs and outstanding Customer Service, and in the spirit of exercising our right to live and travel anywhere in our nation, we take pride in giving America the Freedom to Fly. Freedom means something different for everyone, and people in our country are constantly working to protect our current freedoms and gain new ones. As the Southwest Airlines Vice President of Diversity & Inclusion, I am especially thankful that the People at our Company have the freedom to be themselves. We have a unique Culture that sets us apart from other companies, and while the Southwest Culture is one our Employees share, we enjoy celebrating the differences that make each and every one of us unique. I encourage you this Fourth of July to think about the freedoms you cherish most: the ones that have been hard won, the ones we fight to keep today, and the ones we will fight for in the future. What does Freedom mean to you? Let us know by commenting below!
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As technology continues to evolve, so do our Customers’ preferences. I know change is not always easy, but in order to provide our Customers with the Legendary Customer Service for which we are known , we need to consistently modernize and update our systems. Our Company is modifying our southwest.com web site functionality to make sure we are current with the ever changing world; and with this new transformation, our “Vamonos” page will temporarily be removed from our website. Dieste, our Dallas’ based Hispanic ad agency, has created a temporary landing page that will replace “Vamonos” and direct our Customers to the English language web site or our specialized Spanish telephone line: 1-800-Vamonos (1-800-826-6667). Our Spanish-speaking Customers are welcome to call this line during the hours of 7:00 am─1 am (CT), 7 days a week and a Customer Representative will be happy to help them with their reservations. Thank you for your patience and support during this transition.
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The acknowledgements and the celebrations of Black History Month are very significant in my life. I was born and spent time in the state of Kentucky prior to integration. During that time I was not allowed to attend kindergarten because of the color of my skin, and therefore did not receive that preparation prior to attending the first grade. In 1964, the school system was integrated, and I personally felt the pain of discrimination and inequality. From those experiences, I made a lifelong decision that I would never mistreat anyone due to their race, color, financial status, etc. Today, I find as many opportunities as possible to encourage and motivate others to pursue their dreams and not be discouraged by the mistreatment by others toward them. We have to be overcomers and find strength in our faith. I volunteer my time with the Dallas Moorland YMCA where I totally support their motto, “the mission of the YMCA is to put Christian values into practice through programs that build healthy spirit, mind, and body for all.” The inventions and accomplishments of those before us have enabled many to pursue and realize their dreams. Being able to pause during the month of February and take time to remember individuals who have blazed trails and set examples, reminds us of the responsibility we have to continue the journey. I thank Southwest Airlines for giving me the opportunity to pursue my desires and goals. It is a Company that embraces and appreciates individual differences, welcoming those with a heart to serve others, positioning us for continued success.
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