PinAble Honors National Disability Employment Awareness Month
By: David Chaiken, Chief Architect at Pinterest, and Executive Sponsor of PinAble, Pinterest’s employee group for building an inclusive and accessible community
October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month, and this year celebrates the 30th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act. The theme of this year’s observance is “Increasing Access and Opportunity,” which resonates with Pinterest’s mission to bring everyone the inspiration to create a life they love. This month, we’d like to highlight the work of the members of PinAble, Pinterest’s Employee Resource Group (known internally as Community) with the mission to build an inclusive and accessible community where everyone, regardless of ability, can find inspiration to create a life they love. PinAble advocates for people with all abilities, including Pinployees, job candidates, Pinners, allies and caregivers. Our sister group, Pinside Out, works on educating, informing, and supporting our fellow Pinployees internally and Pinners externally with respect to mental health and invisible illness.
Throughout October, PinAble is sponsoring a number of inspiring events for Pinployees that give insight into how Pinterest is working towards the goals of Access and Opportunity. All events listed below are internal.
Earlier this month, our All Hands Q&A live stream featured an interview with the indomitable Lex Gillette by Jeremy King, Head of Engineering at Pinterest. Lex’s TedTalk is profoundly inspiring, and we encourage you to get to know his incredible story. Our Women@ ERG is holding our annual (virtual) Women@ conference this month, and we’ll have two events on the agenda: Pinployee and PinAble lead Linnea Zulch will hold a conversation with Shauna Lozada of the AHRC NYC titled: Pathways @ work: A journey in creating nonprofit partnerships & building a diverse workforce. Also during the conference, Pinployees Rachel Murphy, Lindsay Mindler, Alexandra Nikolajev, Karen Bloom and Meredith Arthur are hosting a panel titled: Mental Health Here and Now. Lastly, Dr Joe Grasso will be holding a highly timely conversation titled Talking Health Anxiety
This year is the 75th observation of Disability Employment Awareness Month, which has changed in focus over the years as the understanding of human rights and ability have evolved. The words of Kate Bornstein on the topic give us a meaningful call to action: “Let’s stop ‘tolerating’ or ‘accepting’ difference, as if we’re so much better for not being different in the first place. Instead, let’s celebrate difference, because in this world it takes a lot of guts to be different.” In fact, people with disabilities make up 15% of the world’s population. Celebrating differences across all aspects of diversity is key to our journey to an inspired culture: making everyone feel safe, welcome, and championed at Pinterest. As part of this movement, PinAble offers tremendous potential for intersectional learning and empowerment that will help unleash the full potential of everyone, regardless of differences, ability, veteran status, race, gender, or sexual orientation. For more information on PinAble, take a look at our Pinterest boards.
A huge thank you to our PinAble leads Mara Sohn, Linnea Zulch, Shayna Steinfeld, Rosie Shepherd, Meredith Arthur, and Rachel Murphy, for all their hard work and dedication to supporting our community.