On November 20, the world observes the International Transgender Day of Remembrance. During this day we remember those whose lives have been lost as a result of transphobia or hate crimes. And even though this day is one of remembrance, it’s important to understand that there is still much work to do to support the LGBTQ+ community.
Quartz recognizes gender equality and social inclusion are fundamental to supporting our diverse communities. Quartz’s strategic plan and core values are based on a diverse and inclusive culture.
One of the first steps in promoting awareness was to create a Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DE&I) Department committed to fostering a diverse and inclusive workplace. At Quartz we value the unique insights, perspectives, and backgrounds of all employees. Leadership understands the importance of supporting a multi-cultural workforce and that learning more about cultural differences helps build an environment of trust, respect, and inclusion.
Here are some things Quartz is doing to advance gender equality and social inclusion concerning the LGBTQ+ community, communities of color and other ethnicities, and all members:
- Diversity Matters Cultural Competency Training: Quartz embeds cultural competency throughout our training in collaboration with the Organizational Learning and Development Department.
- Quartz Internal DE&I Assessment: Quartz looks internally to assess the room for growth concerning diversity, equity, and inclusion.
- DE&I Change Team: This team was formed to help build and support a culturally diverse workforce at Quartz. The team collaborates with the company and community stakeholders to enhance awareness and cultural diversity through internal communication and training.
- Gender Pronouns eLearning: As part of our support for nonbinary, gender-expansive communities, employees learn to use correct gender pronouns when communicating with co-workers and members. This shows we value people’s differences and are considerate of the dignity, feelings, and capabilities of others.
- Revamping Hiring Manager Training: Quartz is raising awareness about implicit bias with hiring managers and providing strategies for making objective hiring decisions in collaboration with the Organizational Learning and Development Department.
- Resources list for our members: We put together a resource list to help transgender and gender-expansive members navigate the insurance process. We also provide information on who to contact if they have questions about their gender-affirming healthcare needs. This document is available on our Quartz website.
- Trans and Gender 101 Lunch and Learn: The DE&I team and our Women United Employee Resource Group (ERG) celebrated Pride Month by hosting a Lunch and Learn with presenter Dina Nina Martinez, a transgender stand-up comic, entrepreneur, and speaker. She spoke about the disparities that trans and gender-expansive people face daily.
In addition to DE&I initiatives, Quartz is committed to the health and well-being of its members by providing equal access to high-quality health care.
Quartz partners with UW Health, collaborating with their experts to stay current on procedures and treatment options for our transgender members. Together, we are enhancing the care coordination process for our transgender community. Our shared goal is to ensure members feel supported through their care journey. We evaluate policies guided by new data and medical advancements. Based on the review of policies related to gender-affirming services, Quartz updated coverage to reflect clinical best practices.
Quartz health plans now cover gender-affirming services with prior authorization when they’re performed by an in-network provider. We also lowered age restrictions for mastectomy surgery and started covering frontal cranioplasty (forehead contouring) and tracheal shave.
Quartz does not discriminate based on sexual orientation or gender identity. Both groups are included in our Member Rights & Responsibilities statement, which describes our commitment to inclusive practices. While Quartz recognizes these are small steps in creating a more equitable health care system, they are important steps. Access to information can fuel decisions, opportunities, and even empower our community.
Quartz will continue to work alongside UW Gender Services to identify areas of need and develop strategies to address them. We are committed to better serve the LGBTQ+ community by seeking strong partnerships with providers and creating an inclusive company culture.