9 Non-Cringey Ways to Celebrate Pride Month

- by

When you know better, you do better, and in 2024, we know better than to change your company logo to a rainbow and do nothing else for the 2SLGBTQIA+ community. 

Pride is a big month for us at Starling as we’re a queer-owned company and several team members are under the rainbow, so we always like to be loud and proud in our celebrations. That being said, if your brand doesn’t scream from the rooftops about the support you give to various holidays and causes, that’s okay too. 

Here are 9 non-cringey ways to celebrate pride month for your business. 

1. Share Your Pronouns 

Listing your pronouns is an easy way to create an inclusive work environment for trans and non-binary people. This also helps with clear communication for the many people with androgynous names like Hadley or Teddy. It’s a free way to respect your team. 

  • Zoom 
  • Business Card
  • Email Signature 
  • Messaging Apps
  • LinkedIn and Other Social Media Profiles

2. Shop at Queer-Owned Businesses 

Small businesses frequently encounter discrimination and hurdles that larger counterparts don’t. Supporting LGBTQ2S+ businesses through your purchases can help support the community and promote inclusivity. 

Our city has many incredible LGBTQ2S+ businesses — and your community does, too! Do your research to find queer-owned businesses, operators, makers, consultants and specialists you can support in June. 

The Rainbow Pages has an up-to-date list of queer-owned businesses in Winnipeg, which you can find here.

3. Add 2SLGBTQIA+ Resources to Your Website 

With hate-fuelled rhetoric circling the internet on the daily, having 2SLGBTQIA+ resources listed on your website is a good way to signal to folks that your business is queer-friendly. 

While we love seeing pride content in June, having 2SLGBTQIA+ resources live on your website year-round highlights that you don’t just serve the community when people have eyes on your business — and removing it after June is a form of “rainbow washing.” 

Here’s a great article on other ways you can be more LGBTQ+ friendly with your website. 

4. Make a Donation 

Support the LGBTQ+ community by giving to a good cause. You can find local nonprofits to help out or pick a bigger charity that supports the community in a way that feels impactful to you. 

Supporting these groups can help your company meet diversity and inclusion goals while showing that you stand by your values.

You can also make in-kind donations to places like Sunshine House, a community drop-in and resource centre focusing on harm reduction and social inclusion.

Companies are getting creative with ways to make donations, like WillowPress, a queer-owned bookstore. Their buy-to-donate program builds access to educational and inclusive books. You simply choose a monetary amount, let them know if you have a specific school in mind or a topic that is important to you, and they will do the rest!

5. Start a Reading Club 

It’s like a temporary book club, but for Pride. We’re all busy, but reading one book together seems like a manageable task. Plus, it’s a bonus if your employer allows book club to happen during work hours — and why not make it a potluck while you’re at it?! 

A reading club doubles as a way to support an LGBTQ+ author, and can serve as a way to educate yourself in a supportive environment. 

McNally Robinson has a 2SLGBTQAI+ Recommended Reads section, a great place to start!  

6. Attend a Pride Event 

This seems like an obvious one because who doesn’t want to go to a drag brunch or queer ride club? But carving out time in the summer is hard. On average, more than 45 community-organized events are held during Pride Season in Winnipeg. In fact, they’ve already started! You can find the list here, and hopefully, you can find one that fits into your schedule.

7. Volunteer 

Advocacy groups, health clinics, youth centres, and fundraisers supporting the LGBTQ+ community could use your help. If cash flow is tight but you want to support your queer community, consider offering your time or skills. Technology has given us new ways to give back that weren’t possible before. Think outside the box! 

For example, if you are a skilled graphic designer, offer to help an organization with their next event poster or give them a print for an auction. 

You can find LGBTQ2S+ organizations in your community through a quick online search or by reaching out to your local LGBTQ2S+ centre. If you’re based in Winnipeg, the Rainbow Resource Centre is looking for volunteers.

8. Share the Love

Truly, anyone can do this one, and it helps more than you think. If you LOVE the dark chocolate sea salt cookies at Black Market Provisions as much as we do, let them know! Show these businesses some love — god knows they get enough hate. 

  • Mail them a thoughtful letter 
  • Write them a Google Review 
  • Call them and thank them for their amazing product/service

You better believe we left amazing product reviews on every Piper & Perro scent (especially Froth) because it smells incredible. 

9. Publish a Blog Post 

If you’re already posting blogs, why not include a Pride Month post?

We say this with a caveat because we don’t want to see companies using pride as a marketing tactic. However, it can be a great way to:

  • Share resources 
  • Highlight businesses in your area 
  • Share how your business is investing in DEI training 
  • Highlight that you are a safe space for LGBTQ+ folks 
  • Generate ideas within your team on how to celebrate 
  • Think about how your team can do a better job of supporting the community 

To be a genuinely supportive workplace for the LGBTQ+ community, make sure your efforts create real and positive change inside and outside the workplace. 


Let’s not highlight queer team members on social media unless they volunteer themselves. Not all people in the LGBTQ+ community feel safe (or want to) share their sexuality with others. Plus, who's to say you don’t have coworkers who aren’t “out” yet or who are questioning their sexuality? Their queerness is valid, too! 

Language Guide 

The words you use matter. We’re in a time where people are focusing on self-discovery, and we need new words for new experiences and identities. There are even people in the LGBTQ+ community that don’t get it right sometimes! However, it’s important to educate yourself and do your best when it comes to respecting people’s identities. Below is a brief glossary of commonly used words related to Pride Month. 

2SLGBTQIA+: Two Spirit, Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer & Questioning, Intersex, Asexual & Agender 

Asexual: An asexual is an individual who does not experience sexual attraction or experiences such a low level of sexual attraction that they do not consider it to be notable.

Note: Asexuality is not celibacy. People who choose to be celibate may experience sexual attraction, but not necessarily act on it.

Agender: Someone who does not identify with any sort of gender identity. This term may also be used by someone who intentionally has no recognizable gender presentation. 

Two Spirit: Refers to a person who identifies as having both a masculine and a feminine spirit, and is used by some Indigenous people to describe their sexual, gender and/or spiritual identity. As an umbrella term it may encompass same-sex attraction and a wide variety of gender variance.

Queer: Queer is an umbrella term for people who are not heterosexual or are not cisgender.

Cisgender: Describes a person whose gender identity aligns with those typically associated with the sex assigned to them at birth.

Intersex: A term used for a variety of medical conditions in which a person is born with chromosomes, genitalia, and/or secondary sexual characteristics that are inconsistent with the typical definition of a male or female body. 

Pansexual: A person who is emotionally, romantically, sexually, affectionately, or relationally attracted to people regardless of their gender identity or biological sex.

Trans/Transgender: An umbrella term for people whose gender identity and/or expression is periodically or permanently different from cultural expectations based on the sex they were assigned at birth. Transgender people may identify as straight, gay, bisexual, or some other sexual orientation.

To clarify, trans people and drag queens are NOT THE SAME! Drag is a form of entertainment. Typically, it’s performed by males who use makeup and clothing to exaggerate female gender roles during a performance. But, as the Queen of Drag, RuPaul, says herself, drag is for everyone!

*These terms are definitions, but sexual orientation falls along a continuum, and some may overlap.

Here is a list of more terms and definitions. 

What Starling is Doing For Pride Month

We’re not all talk. Here’s what Starling Social is doing to celebrate Pride Month in 2024: 

We’re Making a Donation to Sunshine House

Sunshine House is an inclusive space that provides programming that fulfills people’s social, community, and recreational needs. Participants can come as they are and are not expected to be “clean” or sober. 

We Added an LGBTQ+ Community Resources Section to Our Website

As a company led by a member of the LGBTQ2S+ community, we feel it's important to highlight and elevate the profiles of other businesses and nonprofits in our province. This section is where you can find resources and some of the businesses and organizations we support. 

We’re Attending Pride Celebrations in Our City

Specifically, you can find us at Devil May Care’s Pre-Pride Drag Show, but we’ll likely attend other events as our schedule allows!

We Wrote This Blog 

Writing is kind of our thing, so it seemed like an appropriate way for us to share resources, re-evaluate our plans for this year, and also give us the opportunity to bookmark some upcoming queer events. We hope you enjoyed reading — and make sure to say hi if you see any of our team at Pride events. 

Tags: Pride month