Arms manufacturer BAE Systems named lead sponsor of Pride in Surrey
One of the world’s biggest arms manufacturers, BAE Systems, has been announced as the primary sponsor of Pride in Surrey.
Pride in Surrey announced on Friday (February 1) that the controversial defence, aerospace and electronics company—which is often criticised for its role in the global arms trade—be the lead sponsor of the inaugural 2019 Pride event.
A spokesperson for Pride in Surrey acknowledged the decision would be “controversial,” but added: “We’d say it’s fab to see them wanting to make a difference, break down industry stereotypes and build for a more diverse and inclusive community.”
BAE Systems ‘proud’ to sponsor Pride in Surrey
The Pride parade will take place on August 10 in Woking.
In a statement, Pride in Surrey organiser Stephen Ireland praised the company for “engaging very early on and demonstrating they wish to make a step change in diversity and inclusion.”
Theresa Palmer of BAE Systems Applied Intelligence added: “BAE Systems is extremely proud to be headline sponsor for the first ever Pride in Surrey.
“We feel strongly that visible support of such openly inclusive events is key to driving the type of diverse workplace we are striving for.
“We acknowledge that we are a large, global presence but what many people may not know is that the Applied Intelligence division is headquartered right here in Surrey.
“That makes this particular event even more personal for us as it represents our neighbours and as a local employer we want to make clear to our community that they have a welcoming, supportive business on their doorstep. “
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