National Hispanic Heritage Month is an annual celebration to recognize the history and culture of Hispanic and Latino Americans. This commemoration was first introduced as a week-long event in 1968 by California Congressman George E. Brown and later gained greater momentum in 1987 when the celebration extended to a 31-day period, spanning September 15 to October 15.
It’s important for organizations to recognize National Hispanic Heritage Month in the workplace to honor the contributions of the largest minority group in the United States and to make steps toward creating a workplace where all employees are valued. Commemorative months offer an opportunity for HR professionals and employers to celebrate diversity and communicate a commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion within an organization.
For this week’s blog, we’re talking with Work Shield’s Director of Client Success, Alicia Valdez, as she shares her recommendations for how to promote diversity and inclusion, particularly for National Hispanic Heritage Month.
Lunch and Learns:
It’s important to acknowledge the contributions of Latino employees in the workplace while celebrating their rich, culturally diverse heritage. Valdez suggests hosting an engaging “lunch and learn” series throughout the month on the topic of Hispanic and Latino terminology and customs for employees to participate and learn something new from week to week.
In order to spotlight unique traditions and provide further education on Hispanic heritage, Valdez suggests that organizations consider hosting a cultural fair where traditional dishes are served, native clothing is worn, and popular legends are shared.
Partnering with nonprofit organizations like the award-winning Hispanic Heritage Foundation is an impactful way to celebrate National Hispanic Heritage Month. Valdez also recommends learning more about the Hispanic Scholarship Fund, the nation’s largest not-for-profit organization supporting higher education for Hispanic Americans.
“It is important that employers cultivate an environment where Latino employees feel included and their cultural background is not only recognized but also celebrated. This will help build a more inclusive workplace culture for not just Latino employees, but for all employees,” Valdez continued.
From hosting a virtual or in-office celebratory event to partnering with a relevant nonprofit organization, there are many ways your organization can commemorate National Hispanic Heritage Month. At Work Shield, we understand that creating this space for employees from different cultures to feel recognized and appreciated all year long is a vital piece to a thriving workplace environment. For more information on Work Shield, contact us here.
About Jared Pope
Jared is Founder and CEO of Work Shield, the only start-to-finish workplace harassment and discrimination reporting, investigation and resolution solution that protects employees, employers and cultures at the same time. Jared practiced law and ran a practice focused on human resources, ERISA, benefits and employment matters for over 15 years and is a knowledgeable resource on workplace culture and harassment and discrimination issues.
Connect with him on LinkedIn.