Lighthouse Learning Series: Cultivating Affirming Workspaces
Starting in January 2023 and running until April 2023, we will be covering a series of queer harm reduction topics with the goal of creating a more inclusive movement.
Priority is given to those living and working in New York due to program scope. However, the series will be held virtually and is open to all those who would like to build on their harm reduction knowledge to provide better services to LGB/TGNC+ folks!
Session Description: It’s one thing to create a workplace that is accepting of trans and gender non-conforming folks, but how can employers create workplaces that proactively affirm TGNC folks? Join this session to learn how to create an affirming workplace for trans and gender non-conforming folks, from places to share pronouns to less-considered HR practices. We’ll also hear a little about the founding of the Affirming Spaces Project, a New Hampshire-based project aiming to create affirming workspaces and customer experiences for TGNC folks.
Facilitator bio: Palana Belken (she/her) is a mover and shaker that proudly calls Rochester NH home.
Palana’s extensive LGBTQ-centric work has included organizing trans and gender non-conforming folks with the ACLU of New Hampshire, serving as the first openly trans person to be elected to a city council in New Hampshire, and managing cafe-turned-queer-oasis, Teatotaller. She also helped launch the Affirming Spaces Project, a new non-profit organization aiming to make New Hampshire a more affirming place for folks of all gender identities.
In 2020, Palana made The Advocate’s Champions of Pride list and authored an extensive report about transgender students for ACLU-NH titled “The Case For Lived Equality in the Classroom”.
Palana lives in Rochester with her Weimaraner, Hapley. She is currently the Director of Operations at New Hampshire Harm Reduction Coalition.