Pride 2022

NIH Pride 2022: Together Toward History

A Message from the Strategist

Why Understanding Intersectionality Is Critical

[M]any of the battles we’re fighting today are problems that grow out of intersectional failures from yesterday. So, my hope—I believe a collective hope…is that this concept can help us provide a prism to find some of those failures, to repair those failures, and to create a basis for a far broader, deeper, more robust coalition towards the kind of world [workplace] we want to build.

-- Kimberlé Crenshaw, Women of the World Festival, London, 2016

The Lavender Scare’s dismissal of so many Federal workers, the daily oppressions that led to the Stonewall Uprising, the ways the HIV/AIDS crisis ravaged so many lives and the violence trans women of color now continue to face daily, these are some of the “failures” of which Dr. Crenshaw refers.

Bali White

The framework for the discussion this month is recognizing the intersection of being a member of the LGBTQ+ community as well as having other lived experiences based around race, class, disability, citizenship, and more. Beyond the singular, it is the combination of these multiple, overlapping identities that create unique challenges that are much more complex, and that must be acknowledged as we create the tools and resources to create a safe environment that ensures everyone is secure.

Bali White
Principal Strategist
Portfolio for Sexual and Gender Minorities

Messages from our Leadership

Dr. Tabak

Dear Colleagues,

Please join me in celebrating Pride Month and this year’s theme, Together Toward Discovery. Pride is a time to celebrate the challenges the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and questioning, intersex, and other identities (LGBTQI+) community has overcome, recognize the barriers they continue to face, highlight their contributions, and promote dignity and equity for all.

NIH is committed to the principles of equal employment opportunities and seeks to cultivate an inclusive and affirming work environment for all. With this year’s theme, Together Toward Discovery, we will highlight the importance of intersectionality as a lens to explore how overlapping identities can influence visibility in the NIH workplace. As humans, we are shaped by different social dimensions including race, ethnicity, class, age, gender identity, disability, citizenship, etc., and we face unique challenges because of the intersections of these identities. NIH 2022 Pride activities highlight the experiences of individuals who connect their LGBTQI+ identity and their other identities.

Understanding intersectionality is vital because LGBTQI+ individuals face challenges from multiple perspectives associated with their sexual orientation and/or gender identity as well their ethnicity and race, disability, class, and other lived experiences. These challenges may include hiring bias, workplace discrimination, pay equity, and educational barriers. At NIH, we are committed to ensuring that LGBTQI+ employees have equal employment opportunities and can reach their full potential.

To further demonstrate the importance of intersectionality, I am pleased that Admiral Rachel Levine M.D., the HHS Assistant Secretary for Health, will help us celebrate Pride Month. Admiral Levine will provide opening remarks at the NIH-hosted panel discussion entitled “How Intersecting Identities Impact Our NIH Work” on June 22, 2022.

For additional information on how to join all of NIH’s Pride Month activities, please visit the NIH Pride 2022 and NIH Pride 2022 Health Research webpages. You may also contact Bali White, the Sexual and Gender Minority Employment Portfolio Strategist in the Office of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion.

I wish you all a Happy Pride Month!

Lawrence A. Tabak, D.D.S., Ph.D.
Acting Director, NIH

Dr. Little

Join us for NIH’s 2022 Pride Month celebration as we affirm the lived experiences of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, transsexual, queer and questioning, and intersex (LGBTQI+) community, and celebrate their contributions to society. Pride Month is an annual celebration that recognizes the 1969 Stonewall Uprising as a tipping point for acknowledging the LGBTQI+ community’s challenges and contributions throughout history.

This year’s Pride Month theme, Together Toward Discovery, builds on the work of Dr. Kimberlé Crenshaw, a scholar whose work highlights an understanding of human beings as shaped by the interaction of different social dimensions, such as race, ethnicity, gender, class, sexuality, geography, age, ability, and migration status. She observed that the dominant approach to discrimination tends to focus on a single categorical axis.1 Dr. Crenshaw illustrates that the lives of human beings cannot be explained by considering a single category.2 People are multidimensional and complex, and relationships and power dynamics between social identities and “isms” such as heterosexism, ableism, and ageism are linked. Everyone has multiple identities and can face unique challenges because of the intersections of these identities.

This month, EDI is collaborating with, Salutaris, the NIH Sexual and Gender Minority (SGM) Employee Resource Group. EDI and Salutaris will host a panel discussion entitled Together Toward Discovery: How Intersecting Identities Impact Our NIH Work. We are honored that Admiral Rachel Levine, MD, Assistant Secretary for Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services will provide opening remarks for the panel discussion. The panel will feature SGM employees from NIH scientific and administrative occupations.

EDI will also host a Twitter chat on intersecting identities to discuss the experiences of LGBTQIA+ individuals in the workplace. Other activities this month include the launch of a blog series, Intersectional Voices, written from the perspectives of guest LGBTQI+ writers; an outdoor picnic celebration; and participation in the DC Pride Parade with the Pride in Federal Service contingent.

To participate in these events or learn more, visit the EDI Pride 2022 landing page. You may also contact Bali White for more information about the Sexual and Gender Minority Employment Portfolio.

Shelma Middleton Little, Ph.D.
Acting EDI Director


  1. Hopkins P. Social geography I: Intersectionality. Progress in Human Geography. 2019;43(5):937-947. doi:10.1177/0309132517743677
  2. Crenshaw, K. (2017) On Intersectionality: Essential Writings. New York: The New Press.

Activities & Events

Smiling man giving a thumbs up to the camera.

Outdoor Pride Picnic

Tuesday, June 7, 2022 | 1-3PM ET

Clinical Center, South Entrance

This will be a social event in observance of Pride Month, bringing members of SGM communities and their allies together at NIH for an outdoor picnic in celebration. This event will be held by the South Entrance of the Clinical Center and will be co-hosted by Salutaris: The NIH Sexual & Gender Minority Employee Resource Group and the NIH Office of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion. NIH Office of Research Services coordinated food trucks will be on site.

Smiling woman with a hand on the arm of her glasses and the other hand on her hip.

Capital Pride Alliance Pride Parade – NIH (Salutaris and EDI) with Pride in Federal Service

Saturday, June 11, 3:00 – 7:30PM (10AM-12PM lineup time) ET

Logan & Dupont Circle Neighborhoods, DC

Members of the NIH community are welcome to march in the Capital Pride Alliance Pride Parade with a contingent of federal employees who identify as LGBTQ+ and/or as allies. This contingent is being organized by PRIDE in Federal Service (PFS), an interagency group comprised of LGBTQ+ employees and their allies. The parade is expected to loop around the District neighborhoods of Logan Circle and Dupont Circle from 3:00 to 7:30 PM and line-up times are tentatively between 10 AM to 12:00 PM.

Smiling woman looking excited and pointing to her mobile phone.

Twitter Chat – Intersecting Identities: Experiences of LGBTQIA+ People in the Workforce

Wednesday, June 15, 2022 | 1-2PM ET

EDI will be hosting a Twitter Chat to engage with the NIH community in a discussion about how intersecting identities shape and impact the workplace and overall life experiences of LGBTQIA+ people. Twitter Chats are great for building community, sharing knowledge, enhancing mutual understanding, and providing a safe place for meaningful dialogue. All members of the NIH community are invited to participate in this Twitter Chat and share their experiences, should they wish.

Smiling man winking at the camera.

Panel Discussion: Together Toward Discovery: How intersecting identities impact our NIH work

Wednesday, June 22, 2022 | 1-3PM ET

Wilson Hall, Building 1 / Virtual

With opening remarks by Admiral Rachel Levine, MD, HHS Assistant Secretary for Health and moderated by Bali White, this event will feature a diverse panel of invited speakers from different components across the NIH who will be led through a moderated discussion, followed by a question-and-answer session.

Intersectional Voices: Revisiting Past Perspectives

Take a moment to read and view these previously published EDI blogs and our special campaign, “Telling Our Stories,” that underscore intersectionality.

Resources for Better Understanding LGBTQIA+ People

Smiling man standing in front of the Pride flag.

LGBT Identification in U.S. Ticks Up to 7.1%1

The proportion of U.S. adults who consider themselves to be lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender has grown at a faster pace over the past year than in prior years. This is occurring as more of Gen Z is reaching adulthood. These young adults are coming of age, including coming to terms with their sexuality or gender identity, at a time when Americans increasingly accept gays, lesbians and transgender people, and LGBT individuals enjoy increasing legal protection against discrimination.

Given the large disparities in LGBT identification between younger and older generations of Americans, the proportion of all Americans who identify as LGBT can be expected to grow in the future as younger generations will constitute a larger share of the total U.S. adult population. With one in 10 millennials and one in five Gen Z members identifying as LGBT, the proportion of LGBT Americans should exceed 10% in the near future.


Graph showing increase in Americans self-identifiying as LGBTQ+

Yet [The LGBT Community] Feel Compelled to Hide in Plain Sight

46% of LGBT employees hide who they are at work. A “Chilly work environment” is created through a multitude of small inequities in the workplace which targets SGM workers.

  • 36% Making people feel uncomfortable.
  • 27% People might think I’m attracted to them.
  • 38% Stereotyped.
  • 53% Heard LG jokes, 41% trans, 37% bi.
  • 31% Losing connection with coworkers.
  • 13% Thought they would be fired.

Source: A Workplace Divided: Understanding the Climate for LGBTQ Workers Nationwide, Human Rights Campaign

Percentage of LGB Workers Report Perceived Challenges Advancing because of Sexual Orientation

  • 10-21% Received a negative performance evaluation
  • 11-28% Passed over for a promotion
  • 9% Lost a job in the past five years

Percentage of Transgender Workers Report Perceived Challenges Advancing because of Gender Identity

  • 90% Harassment on the job.
  • 47% Fired, not hired or denied promotion.
  • 44% Under-employment
  • 26% Loss of job because of Gender Identity

Source: Injustice At Every Turn: A Report of the National Transgender Discrimination Survey, National LGBTQ Task Force

Executive Level Support for LGBTQIA+ Communities

White House Briefing Room