Supporting PIW

“We are passionate about creating a safe and inclusive environment where we can be proud of who we are. The Refract working group has been running for over 3 years, with active support from over 150 allies and LGBTI+ identifying employees who make up the broader Refract network. The Refract group advocates for greater inclusion through changes to policy, visible symbols of support, engaging and empowering employees through training, events and communications to be active allies at work and in the community, and through raising funds for charities that support the LGBTI+ community.”

 – Refract, Melbourne Water

I could not be prouder about my workplace’s pride in diversity. GWMWater are quite explicit in their support of LGBTQI+ workers, with posters and policies in place. More importantly, from my experience I feel GWMWater really do walk the walk and have fostered an inclusive culture within the business. I feel well and truly accepted and have no fear about being open about my sexuality at work. GWMWater support my volunteering for a local group that focuses on LGBTQI+ advocacy in the region. Our People and Culture team also check in with their LGBTQI+ workers team from time to time on LGBTQI+ related issues or policies, which I find to be really productive and respectful.
– Patrick Quaine, Water Resource Planner, Grampians Wimmera Mallee Water

A supportive work environment for me as the parent of a gay child, means I don’t feel forced to hide the fact my son is a drag queen and I can share his journey and successes as the proud parent I am.
Adam Glasson (Goulburn Valley Water)


“I think it’s really important to have a network of LGBTIQ+ people in our industry. It’s essential that I feel safe and included at work, and being able to connect with other LGBTIQ+ people in the water industry and hear about their experiences is a vital aspect of that.”
– Laura Haughton, Graphic Designer, CX Metrics & Analytics, Yarra Valley Water

Testimonials to Support the Pride in Water initiative

It’s great to see the water industry supporting our LGBTIQ employees with the formation of the Pride in Water Network.  The network will provide an opportunity for LGBTIQ employees in the water industry a chance to connect, gain support, guidance and mentoring. Importantly, the network will support the creation of workplaces that are safe and inclusive. I encourage anyone who is interested to become involved, as an LGBTIQ person or an ally, so we can all enjoy an industry place where everyone feels as though they belong, and where our differences are valued and celebrated.

Tracey Slatter Managing Director, Barwon Water

“Central Highlands Water (CHW) is proud to support the Victorian Water Industry’s “Pride in Water” network supporting LGBTIQ+ staff in the water industry.

CHW strives to be a diverse, safe and inclusive organisation that reflects the communities we service.  We do this because it is the right thing to do for our people.  We also know that a diverse culture, where our people reflect the communities we service, and an inclusive culture, which expects and rewards behaviours that support all our people to reach their full potential means that our organisation will be most successful.”

– Paul O’Donohue Managing Director, Central Highlands Water

“At Hunter Water we fundamentally believe in and commit to diversity and inclusion. We value individuals’ unique capabilities, backgrounds, experiences and characteristics. We rely on these diverse perspectives to drive innovation and collaboration, to deliver the best outcome for our customers and communities. It is this diversity of perspectives that will enable us to meet the challenges of the future. We strive to create an inclusive environment where there is genuine equality of opportunity regardless of people’s gender, age, cultural background, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability or family status.”

Darren Cleary Managing Director, Hunter Water Corporation

“As a major regional organisation, Wannon Water has a responsibility to champion human rights. We believe that everyone should be treated equally and with respect – no matter their background, heritage, ability, gender or sexual orientation.”

Andrew JeffersManaging Director, Wannon Water

“I stand proudly for all at SRW welcoming people from all communities and backgrounds.

 We stand for creating an environment which is fair, safe and welcoming of all people regardless of their sexual orientation, gender identity or intersex status.  We aim to foster a workplace environment and culture where all employees can feel free to be themselves and to thrive as we deliver excellence in everything we do.”

Cameron FitzGerald Managing Director, Southern Rural Water

“We’re passionate about creating an inclusive workplace that promotes and values diversity which includes supporting our LGBTIQ employees and customers.”

 David Ryan Managing Director, City West Water

“Melbourne Water has made considerable and consistent effort to into ensuring that all of our employees feel safe and valued at work. I am proud of the work that Melbourne Water employees have been doing through Refract (our LGBTI+ and allies employee network), which we launched in 2017. We have taken significant action over the last 3 years to create a more inclusive culture through increasing our understanding of what we can do to demonstrate respect, inclusion and be active allies for our LGBTI+ colleagues and community.

We are delighted to be partnering with our colleagues across the water sector to lead and advocate for greater inclusion across the industry and our broader community. Together we can create real change.”

– Michael Wandmaker Managing Director, Melbourne Water

“It is very encouraging to see our industry show its genuine support and promotion of the LGBTIQ+ community.  Brendan, Jacquie and the Pride in Water working group have led the way in raising awareness within the water industry, celebrating our diversity and driving support for our LGBTIQ+ people.  As the leading association for the Victorian water industry, VicWater is pleased to support the Pride in Water network in making a difference for diversity and inclusion across the sector.”

 Peter Morison CEO, VicWater

“At Westernport Water we recognise the possibilities and benefits of inclusion and diversity in our workplace. We are actively working towards a workforce where diversity is celebrated and all people are respected, valued, and affirmed inclusive of their sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression.”

– Peter Quigley Managing Director, Westernport Water

“Goulburn Valley Water is committed to inclusive strategies and actions that support and celebrate the contribution of LGBTI+ people in our workforce, industry, families and communities. Providing a safe place where all people feel like they can be themselves and contribute their best is important to us. The Pride in Water Network launch is an exciting opportunity for us to connect with others and support and celebrate the LGBTI+ community.”

– Peter Quinn Managing Director, Goulburn Valley Water

“East Gippsland Water is excited to support the Pride in Water Network, a fantastic initiative that allows our people who identify as LGBTIQ+ and allies to share, connect and support each other.  

As an organisation we recognise that we each hold power in our words and actions to create a culturally safe workplace and we are committed to proving a ‘whole of person’ approach, because everyone deserves to feel safe, included and valued.  We also recognise our role as a community leader in a remote part of Victoria, appreciating that LGBTIQ+ people in our community have experienced stigma and fought for support across the community as a hidden minority group. We know we are better when we work together to provide support, connect and share stories as an industry, a business and as a community. “ 

– Steve McKenzie Managing Director, East Gippsland Water

“North East Water is committed to providing a working environment where our people are able to be their authentic selves, and we are proud to support and celebrate our LGBTI+ employees, families and community members. We proudly support VicWater’s Pride in Water Network and the opportunity it affords the water sector to demonstrate its recognition and support of our LGBTI+ community.”

–Craig Heiner – Managing Director, North East Water

“South Gippsland Water values diversity and promotes inclusion. As such, we support the right to equality and fairness for all LGBTIQ Victorians and are committed to actively pursuing an inclusive work environment where all are treated with respect and feel valued and supported.”

– Philippe du PlessisManaging Director, South Gippsland Water

“I’m really proud of our involvement in the Pride in Water initiative. We’re working hard to create a better world free from discrimination, and for us, that starts in our workplace. We’re proud of our diverse, inclusive culture where everyone can be who they are, but we know as a society we need to do more to stop prejudice and discrimination. Pride in Water is a fantastic, industry-wide initiative to support our LGBTIQ colleagues and their families and friends. I’m excited for us at South East Water to be part of a program to lead change both in our industry and beyond and create a safer, more supportive and better workplace for everyone.”

– Lara Olsen – Managing Director, South East Water.

“I’m thrilled that we have been able to support and initiate Pride in Water here at Yarra Valley Water and I am really looking forward to Pride In Water extending into the rest of the water sector and together being able to make a collective stand. At YVW we believe everyone has the right to feel valued, included and safe in the work place. Its good business, its good for people but its also the right thing to do.”

– Pat McCaffertyManaging Director, Yarra Valley Water

“Western Water is dedicated to creating an inclusive work environment where all individuals feel comfortable and can bring their whole selves to work. Providing a workplace of equality is fundamental to who we are at Western Water and in this spirit, we want to express our strong support for the new VicWater ‘Pride In Water Network’ and our LGBTIQ employees, customers and community. “

– Jeff Rigby Managing Director, Western Water

“At Urban Utilities, we have long been committed to diversity and inclusion and are thrilled to support the Pride in Water network.

When our people come to work, it is paramount they feel comfortable and confident to be their authentic selves. For this reason, we recently launched Urban Pride – a dedicated network that unites and celebrates individuals of all orientations and identities.

It’s an honour to lead an organisation that champions our LGBTQI+ employees, families, allies and community members.”

– Louise Dudley – Chief Executive Officer, Urban Utilities

“WSAA is pleased to support Pride in Water and the network it is creating for LGBTIQ+ people and allies from across the water industry. We were very proud to support Brendan grow Pride in Water through the WSAA Ross Young Scholarship in 2019. Inclusive workplaces are important and we want everyone in the water industry to feel safe, valued and included.” 

– Adam Lovell – Executive Director, Water Services Association of Australia (WSAA)

“At Hunter Water we fundamentally believe in and commit to diversity and inclusion. We value individuals’ unique capabilities, backgrounds, experiences and characteristics. We rely on these diverse perspectives to drive innovation and collaboration, to deliver the best outcome for our customers and communities. It is this diversity of perspectives that will enable us to meet the challenges of the future. We strive to create an inclusive environment where there is genuine equality of opportunity regardless of people’s gender, age, cultural background, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability or family status.”

– Darren Cleary Managing Director, Hunter Water Corporation

“Water Corporation is committed to being an inclusive workplace free of bias and discrimination, where all our people feel that they are understood, respected and included. So, we are pleased to be part of Pride in Water, supporting our LGBTIQ+ people to connect, support each other and influence positive change in the water industry.”

– Pat Donovan Chief Executive Officer, Water Corporation (WA)

“We are delighted to be part of the ‘Pride in Water’ initiative which provides us with a unique opportunity to show how much we value and appreciate our LGBTIQ+ colleagues and customers. The community we serve is rich in diversity; it’s one of the many reasons the Canberra region is a great place to be. At Icon Water, our people are a reflection of that community and so we are committed to building a workplace culture that is safe, inclusive and for the benefit of all.”

– Ray Hezkial Managing Director, Icon Water

“The Australian Water Association (AWA) is delighted to join Pride in Water, to nationally support our LGBTIQ+ members, customers and community. AWA will continue to enhance diversity and inclusion across the water sector as a part of our Strategy, so that we can continue to inspire and drive a sustainable water future”

– Corinne Cheeseman – CEO, Australian Water Association


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