Riding the rails with Pride: Meet the Glasgow based conductor who is supporting his fellow LGBTQ+ colleagues
Glasgow based conductor, Rhys Blamey, is celebrating Pride Month and is proud to be part of TPE’s LGBTQ+ network, which is working to make the rail industry even more inclusive.
Rhys, 23, has been actively involved in the LGBTQ+ network at TransPennine Express (TPE), which is dedicated to promoting diversity and inclusion across the organisation.
Rhys said: “I joined the rail industry about a year and half ago, since then I have really enjoyed becoming part of the team at TPE and the LGBTQ+ network.
“From my very first time on shift I have always felt supported and welcomed by my colleagues.
"As a gay man, I have never had any trouble expressing myself and who I am at work, I have always felt safe and included.”
As a member of the LGBTQ+ community, Rhys is passionate about creating safe and welcoming spaces for all passengers, regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identify.
Rhys added: “I will admit, I was pleasantly surprised at how inclusive the rail industry is, this inclusivity is one of the factors that drew me to joining the LGBTQ+ network.
“I think it’s important for companies to have these networks as it provides a visibility group of LGBTQ+ community members and allies who are there to offer support and guidance to their fellow colleagues, whatever part of the diversity umbrella they fall under.
“A simple chat could make a big difference to someone who’s struggling with their own identity or questioning whether they want to express themselves at work.
“A priority of the networking group is to ensure no one has to suffer in silence and that every colleague and every customer knows they have a safe space to be themselves.”
Harriet Harbidge, Diversity and Inclusion Manager for TPE, said: “While June marks Pride Month, we strive to create an inclusive environment at TPE year-round.
“We work closely with our LGBTQ+ networking group where our colleagues can have their say on what’s most important to them and endeavour to create a welcoming environment for all.”
This Pride Month, TPE has taken an important step towards promoting diversity and inclusion by issuing a ‘Pride Pack’ to all of its colleagues. The pack is designed to educate and provide guidance on the history of Pride Month and how colleagues can be intentional allies to the LGBTQ+ community.
Read more about TPE’s commitments to diversity and inclusion.
Notes to editors
Rhys Blamey is from Aidrie and based at the Glasgow Depot which connects Scotland to both the East and West Coast of England.