Erik Holladay-McCann This month I interviewed Erik Holladay-McCann about his experiences as an LGBTQ business owner and employee. Keep reading for his insights. Question: Tell me a little about yourself and your business? Answer: My name is Erik Holladay-McCann, the proud owner and operator of Holladay Photography. I launched my own studio in Michigan in 2009, after leaving the press corps following 25 incredible years as a photojournalist, a career that I broke into at the (now unbelievable) age of 14. Combining my passion for storytelling and documentary-style photography with my creative aesthetic derived from a bold cinematic standpoint in my photographs is something I truly love and am privileged to do as a career. Pulling that fledgling business up from its roots in West Michigan and transplanting it to the much bigger planter that is Denver inspired biblical levels of anxiety, though I’ve been able to channel those nerves [...]
When I first started working in HR, the responsibility to my company and employees weighed heavily on me. My degree is in Business and Marketing, not Human Resources, and I was nervous that I might make a mistake and somehow get myself and/or my company sued for some sort of misconduct. I read policies and asked questions and collaborated on decisions and worked my way up within the company, but the worry in the back of my mind never left me. HR leaders in my company described on several occasions how miserable the process of being deposed was or the feeling they had when they realized they didn’t have the documentation they should for an impending legal hearing. When I decided to get my PHR (Professional of Human Resources) certification my primary motivation was learning the HR body of knowledge so I wouldn’t stay awake at night wondering if there [...]
National Campus Ministry Organization Tells Staff to Affirm Their New Human Sexuality Policy or Leave
An October 6 Time article by Elizabeth Dias said that InterVarsity sent out the policy in July with a statement that if any of its staff members disagree with the policy by supporting gay marriage personally that they will be fired. The 1,300 staff members potentially affected have not been asked to sign anything saying they agree with the policy, but instead are being asked by Greg Jao, InterVarsity Vice President and director of campus engagement to “with integrity, identify that (they disagree) and leave.” Jao also asserts that LGBTQ staff can remain employed if they affirm the position paper and commit to remaining celibate.
I watched a video on YouTube this morning entitled “I Was Fired for Being Transgender”; where a transgender man told his story of being discriminated against, and fired by his employer, for his transgender status. I was fascinated as he openly shared with the Internet and the world his positive experience with employment in different states and employers before encountering an employer who was not so accepting. His masculine outward appearance did not give any indication that he had been born female. It was after his new employer shared their personal story, that he shared his website (including bio) and they became aware that he was transgender. The next day at work was quiet and awkward and little was said. Shortly thereafter, he arrived at work and was met with a locked door. The employer stuck their head out to reference an email terminating his employment for non-compliance of an [...]
I recently received a comment on a social media post about equality for LGBTQ workers that surprised me. It probably shouldn’t have – much confusion still exists in our culture about the realities facing LGBTQ populations. The commenter stated that they were confused as to the relevance of the post since, if the workers are American citizens, they already have all the same rights afforded to them as anyone else. Unfortunately, that’s simply not true, as it is still legal in 28 states to fire an employee for being gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender. You can also lose your housing or be refused service at a public place of business in most of those states due to your actual or perceived LGBTQ status.