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Celebrating the freedom to be ourselves

MSD recognises Pride Month and our LGBTQIA+ community in June and beyond

June 8, 2021

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As Pride Month is recognised around the world, MSD Australia and New Zealand is celebrating the diversity of its colleagues in its own unique way and will come together at the end of June to celebrate the month across all parts of the organisation.

Led by the co-chairs of the Australian and New Zealand chapter of MSD’s Rainbow Alliance, Martin Tanudjaja and Theo Orfanos from the Global Clinical Trials Operations team, – self-described as a “couple who work together” – are passionate about their leadership of the Rainbow Alliance and recognising Pride Month beyond June.

“Working in an accepting environment allows everyone to excel. Through our involvement with the Rainbow Alliance, we are looking to foster an already present level of acceptance at MSD Australia and New Zealand, where everyone has the psychological safety to be themselves and be able to bring their whole self  to work,” says Theo.

Martin and Theo lead an 18-strong Rainbow Alliance group, which meets monthly to discuss initiatives and raise issues, with the aim to quickly resolve any concerns or unintended misconceptions related to the LGBTQIA+ community in the workplace. Ultimately, it is a safe space for any employee to ask questions or for help, break down barriers and challenge societal stigmas in a respectful manner.

“At MSD, we already operate within a global community – we all come from different backgrounds, from all walks of life. It’s important that everyone we work with are proud to be our colleagues and celebrate the diversity we contribute to the work we do."

Theo Orfanos

A diverse and inclusive workforce inspires innovation and is fundamental to our company’s success. Having an environment comprised of people from different dimensions of diversity also helps us better understand the unique needs of the customers, health care providers, communities and patients we serve.

As Martin says, “Our company has an impact on the lives of patients, so it’s important for patients to know that our company truly values people for who they are.”