How Link aligns with the UN’s sustainable development agenda

How Link Aligns with the UN’s sustainable development agenda

The work we do at Link to support LGBTQ+ inclusion and to make insurance the industry of choice for the LGBTQ+ community is not just important in its own right. It’s also part of a broader global push for equality and sustainable development. This blog outlines how the work we do aligns with the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals (UNSDGs) in particular.

What are the UNSDGs?

The UNSDGs lie at the heart of the UN’s 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, which UN member states adopted in 2015. The SGDs are a list of 17 goals which recognise that ending global poverty goes hand in hand with “strategies that improve health and education, reduce inequality, and spur economic growth – all while tackling climate change and working to preserve our oceans and forests.” Many insurers have chosen to align their sustainability efforts and strategies to specific UN SDGs, and so we at Link have done the same.

Of the 17 SDGs, there are three in particular that we support:

SDG 5: Gender equality

This goal is “to achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls.” Gender equality is not only a social good, but an essential foundation for a peaceful, prosperous, and sustainable world. We have seen great progress globally in many areas, including time spent on unpaid care and domestic work, decision-making regarding sexual and reproductive health, and gender-responsive budgeting. However, the impact of Covid-19 lockdowns has been to disrupt much of this progress.

At Link, we work hard to ensure more female representation on our Senior Advisory Board, our steering committee, and event attendance – all to ensure that the voices of women within the LGBTQ+ community and allies within the insurance industry are heard and represented. We also host and promote talks and webinars around the topic of lesbian and trans visibility and inclusion.

SDG 10: Reduced inequalities

This goal is “to reduce inequalities within and among countries.” At Link, reducing inequality is at the heart of what we do. Link engages with insurers, reinsurers, brokers and industry bodies to support firms and the market to become more attractive for LGBTQ+ talent.

Link has supported the establishment of several new LGBTQ+ employee resource groups in the insurance sector and will always offer support and guidance to other firms looking to do the same. Link puts charitable giving front and centre of many initiatives. We have supported LGBTQ+ clarities including Switchboard, the Albert Kennedy Trust and Diversity Role Models.

As of 2022, we also established a trans and non-binary inclusion group.

All of this is designed to stamp out the inequalities still facing too many within the LGBTQ+ community in the UK. Now that we have established chapters in New York, LA, Canada, and Bermuda, we are also working to reduce the inequalities facing the LGBTQ+ communities in the insurance industries in those places too.

SDG 16: Peace, Justice and strong institutions

This goal is to “promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels.”

On a global level, the UN points to the fact that sexual violence, crime, exploitation and torture are prevalent where there is a conflict or no rule of law. Governments, civil society, and communities, therefore, need to work together to find lasting solutions to conflict and insecurity. Strengthening the rule of law and promoting human rights is key to this process, as is reducing the flow of illicit arms, combating corruption, and ensuring inclusive participation at all times.

At Link, we focus on the small-scale conflicts LGBTQ+ people face in the workplace – and to some extent in wider society too. We host talks and webinars discussing issues of LGBTQ+ inclusion and the status of LGBTQ+ rights under the law in the countries where we have chapters. Although we focus on the promotion of best practice with regard to LGBTQ+ inclusion in the workplace, in recent years, we have been particularly vocal around the banning of conversion therapy.

We look to cover all aspects of the LGBTQ+ diversity spectrum in our events – to be truly inclusive of the entire community – and are able to bring high profile industry figures and external speakers to the table. At Link, we recognise the importance of giving back and supporting LGBTQ+ charitable causes. We have partnered over the years with many LGBTQ+ charities and this continues to be a core aspect of our DNA.

Every little helps to make the UN’s Sustainability Agenda 2030 a reality

Setting the work of Link in the context of the UN’s SDGs shows not just the broader importance of what we do. It shows that, even in our relatively small way, we are helping the globe move towards achieving the UN’s 2030 Sustainability Agenda. In the same way, each of our members contributes towards the success of our work.

If you’d like to stay up to date with Link – or to take part yourself – visit our LinkedIn page or become a member by signing up to our newsletter. We always welcome new members.