The Many Voices of Pride: Billie’s story
The LGBT+ community is made of many different identities, all of which are as valid and important as the others, and every single one deserves to fly their flag with pride.
For Pride 2019, PinkNews has teamed with Uber to tell stories that show how important visibility is to a diverse rainbow of sexual and gender identities.
This is Billie’s story…
What do you do at Uber?
I’m the Senior Greenlight Expert in Sheffield. My job is to help existing and new drivers get on-boarded with Uber. I normally deal with council regulations as well so it’s a little bit of everything, but mainly making sure that Uber is running in Sheffield and making sure it’s successful as well.
What protocols are in place at Uber to educate drivers on how to treat LGBT+ people?
When drivers onboard with us, we give them a presentation which explicitly describes that if they’ve been seen to discriminate in any way in relation to sexual orientation, religion or anything relating to that, they’ll be brought into the office and we will deal with it in an appropriate manner.
If it continues then we will take serious action against them.
Is it important to educate drivers in more details about the LGBT+ community?
I think it’s really important to educate drivers on the range of flags that exist wihtin the LGBTQ community.
It’s really important that they do understand the different variations so that when they do talk to members of the public, talk to people that get into their cars every day they’re not offending anyone and can relate to them better, to show their understanding.
As we might try to understand them and their background, they should respect people in the same way.
So I do think it’s super important that we create that communication where they can understand where we’re coming from and understand the different flags.
What does it mean to be gender fluid?
Gender fluid is when someone doesn’t really identify as either gender or they might feel they are both genders, or in between that. One day they might could more masculine or more feminine and that’s something I definitely identify with as well.
When I identified as a lesbian, I didn’t really feel like I fitted into that category.
I felt like it was hard being a lesbian and growing up, people discriminating against you and not really fitting into that box.
It was kind of distressing to me. So when I found out about gender fluidity, it was a massive relief for me.
I felt like I finally found somewhere where I could relate to it and as I read up more about it, it just made me happier.
Read all the personal stories from the Many Voices of Pride campaign here.