The policy has been crafted in collaboration with a recently transitioned member of staff

RSA Insurance has updated its staff policy to demonstrate support for trans-identified and transitioning employees.

The policy, which was originally launched in Q4 2021, provides support tools to encourage conversations around gender identity and enable employees to act as “effective allies”.

It also ensures, among other things, that employees are able to set the pace of their own transition and access toilet facilities corresponding to their gender identity.

RSA added that it would amend its internal records to reflect new names and pronouns and would only discuss individual transition plans with broader staff to manage employee expectations and minimise inappropriate responses.

The policy has been developed in collaboration with recently transitioned employee Jackson McGarry. 

Building inclusivity

A Government Equalities Office report released in July 2018 found that there were around 500,000 trans-identified people living in the UK.

However, it also found that over half of this demographic have avoided disclosing their gender identity in fear of a “negative reaction from others”.

McGarry explained: “Transitioning is a life-changing process that can lead to an incredible amount of stress and emotional ups and downs.

“I’m grateful that RSA and my team have been accommodating to my journey, offering flexible working so I can attend my medical appointments, and I feel supported coming to work every day.

“But my experience shouldn’t be a privilege or something that is down to luck.

“It’s truly encouraging to see a company this size taking concrete, company-wide steps to educate its workforce, building an inclusive environment for its trans employees.”

Reflecting communities

RSA created its Building Pride Group for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ+) employees and allies in 2018. The group aims to encourage inclusion in the workplace and raise awareness of topics including gender expression, transgender visibility and destigmatising HIV.

The insurer’s diversity and inclusion manager Gemma Jackson said: “We believe our business is stronger when it reflects the communities we serve. A diverse and open workforce helps us to innovate and ultimately create better insurance products and services.

“At RSA, we are proud of all our employees and we want them to come to work every day knowing they are in a safe space.

“We’re constantly reviewing our recruitment processes and training and development programmes to be more inclusive and our trans policy is our latest initiative to change workplace culture, stamp out discriminatory behaviour and instil tolerant practices.”

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