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2017 July: For the first time, 100 business leaders will march together at Budapest Pride

Budapest, 07.07.2017 – On the initiative of WeAreOpen, this year for the first time some 100 business leaders will march together at Budapest Pride. Many of them will lead groups of several dozen colleagues at the parade. In solidarity with their current and future employees, they are standing up for everyone being judged solely on the basis of their actions and achievements, without regard for any other characteristics. They include the heads of high-profile international brands and Hungarian businesses. The initiative is particularly topical given that, while there are 43,000 unfilled jobs in Hungary’s private sector, international research shows that inclusive companies are more successful and the people working there are more satisfied. Eighty-three percent of students would choose an inclusive workplace. 

By signing up to attend the event, some 100 Hungarian business leaders have expressed their agreement with the following statement: “As a business leader I’ll participate in Budapest Pride. People would like to work for companies where they can be sure, the only thing that matters is their performance, regardless of their gender identity, of their ethnicity or of who they love. As a leader I consider it as an important and responsible act to stand for this value and for our current and future employees. An open workplace is good for the employees, means competitive advantage for the business actors, is the key for better performance and for hiring and retaining colleagues.” The parade will be attended by the heads of the Hungarian offices of well-known international companies, including the founders of WeAreOpen – Prezi, espell and Google – and the CEOs and chairs of Citi, BlackRock, BP, Diageo, Eaton, GE, IBM, Morgan Stanley, Nielsen, Procter & Gamble, and Vodafone. The heads of several dozen Hungarian companies have also signed up to march together with the WeAreOpen float, including research company leaders, communications and advertising experts, coworking office founders, media company leaders, prop makers, architects, web developers, café owners, and startup developers and managers.

Over 1,000 companies and organisations in Hungary are convinced that judging people solely on the basis of their actions and achievements is not only right, but also makes good business sense. The latter point is backed up by numerous international studies. For example, in an international survey of 100 leaders, 89 percent of respondents said that the more inclusive a workplace is, the more satisfied employees are and the better they work together.

One in two employees has encountered negative discrimination at the workplace in Hungary. After people of Roma ethnicity, members of the LGBTQ community face the greatest workplace prejudice in Hungary. Approximately 70% of staff would not like to have a lesbian or gay boss. The next generation, however, thinks differently. According to the 2017 figures of the Hungarian Central Statistical Office, while there are 43,000 unfilled jobs in Hungary’s private sector, 83 percent of students aged over 18 would chose a workplace that they know is inclusive. “It’s important for companies and business leaders to attend Budapest Pride in person. This is their issue too. By participating they’re sending a message to their current and future employees and standing up for everyone being judged solely on the basis of their actions and achievements,” said Melinda Miklós, CEO of WeAreOpen.

Organisers expect over 100 business leaders and numerous groups representing companies and organisations to participate in the Budapest Pride parade on Saturday. Business leaders, companies and organisations still have time to sign up on the website. 

About WeAreOpen

The WeAreOpen community initiative was launched in the summer of 2013 by Prezi, espell and Google. WeAreOpen’s principal sponsor is Citi.

In the past four years, more than 1,000 companies, organisations and communities have joined WeAreOpen, including Hungarian businesses, brands with a high Hungarian and international profile, and civil organisations and communities. WeAreOpen will be participating in Budapest Pride for the fifth time. It has also launched more than 10 other campaigns, including in support of gender equality at the workplace and equal treatment of people with disabilities.

Those joining the WeAreOpen initiative hold the fundamental belief that everyone is to be judged solely on the basis of their actions and achievements, without regard to age, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, national or ethnic identity and origin, political, religious or other views and physical or other abilities. They are convinced that being an inclusive company or organisation is not only right, but also makes good business sense.


Photos for use of WeAreOpen participating at previous Budapest Pride parades with companies and organisations are available on WeAreOpen’s Facebook page.

For more information now or during Budapest Pride, including information about the companies and organisations marching with the WeAreOpen float, please contact:

Melinda Miklós