Its councillors march each year in Pride March and now Port Phillip City Council has earned an award for celebrating diversity.
The Council, which incorporates St Kilda, Elwood, South Melbourne, Windsor and Albert Park, recently won a Diversity@Work Award for GLBTI inclusion in the small-to-medium organisation category.
Port Phillip mayor Frank O’Connor said the award recognised specific council efforts to include GLBTI people, along with other people from diverse backgrounds.
“In creating an environment where diversity becomes the norm and appreciated, we create a place where everyone feels valued for the good they can bring to the organisation,” he said.
Council staff formed a GLBTI group five years ago which organises GLBTI social events for other staff.
“By creating a positive workplace where GLBTI staff can socialise and create a network among peers, the group helps break down any sense of being ‘the only gay in the village,’ ” O’Connor said.
“It also contributes to a workplace culture that is vibrant, creative and has a strong sense of social justice.”
The GLBTI group is also currently working with local government professional body LGPro to forge a network across all Victorian councils to support GLBTI staff.
The University of Western Australia also took home an award for GLBTI inclusion in the large organisation category for the success of its Ally Program.
The Ally Program, set up in 2002, aims to create a culture of inclusion by promoting greater visibility and awareness of GLBTI issues for staff and students.
The program emphasises including straight allies for support. So far 250 allies have been recruited across campus.
Diversity@Work is a consultancy firm which helps businesses develop diversity strategies and currently works with the Victorian Government.

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