eir launch first LGBT Employee Network

Members News - Nov 24, 2015
Spectrum CSR

2015 has been a year of change for eir, Ireland’s principal provider of fixed-line and mobile telecommunications services, the company has undergone a major rebrand and in April of this year eir became a member of the GLEN Diversity Champions programme. eir recently launched their first Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) network for employees at an event in eir headquarters, 1HSQ.

spectrum group

The eir Spectrum network is fully inclusive with both LGBT employees and straight allies working together with a common goal of raising awareness both within the company and throughout Ireland, that eir is a company where everyone, regardless of sexuality or background are welcome to bring their whole selves to work and will be respected for what they, as individuals bring to the eir team.

Gerry Sheridan Chair of eir Spectrum: “My experience of working at eir has been a positive one as a Gay man. When I told my friends and colleagues that I was going to enter into a civil partnership with Shane they gave me the same celebration that my other colleagues received when they left to get married. I joined Spectrum because I believe that it is really important to create a work environment where people can be themselves. It is also important for other LGBT colleagues to see that there are people just like them out in eir and that they too will be supported. When you’re not out at work it takes a huge amount of energy to conceal your true self day in, day out and that cannot be healthy long term. That is why eir and Spectrum is working together to create an environment where everybody can bring their whole-self to work.”

The Spectrum team is made up of eir employees from all across the business and with two senior sponsors in place, Carolan Lennon and Hugh O’Brien; the team is fully supported to meet their objectives.

Angelina Costello Heads up Procurement in the Networks division of eir: “The Gay Marriage referendum was huge and really showed that Ireland has changed for the better. We are such a tolerant country and eir has reflected that in recent years. I wouldn’t have been comfortable discussing in work my personal life until a few years ago. I think the atmosphere has changed and the Spectrum group launch is an acceptance and realisation of these changes in attitude and will act as a support mechanism for anyone apprehensive about being themselves. We want everyone to bring their whole selves to work. I had to work through that journey myself but with Spectrum now in place any young person should feel no apprehension about who they are.”

The company has an active Diversity & Inclusion programme in place which runs learning and mentoring sessions, with the objective of ensuring that eir is indeed a business that is open and inclusive for all. eir may have been seen as traditional in the past but with the re-brand and the inception of the Spectrum network employees are working to change perceptions and demonstrate that indeed eir is a progressive Irish company where a broad ‘spectrum’ of people are welcome.

Pictured at the launch of Spectrum was (L-R): Paul Kiernan, Mark Donoghue, Mary Joseph Auxilia, Dermot McCarthy, GAA Star Donal Og Cusack, Gerry Sheridan, Angelina Costello, Stuart Coleman, Michelle Toner and Carolan Lennon