Pride Month: We Stand with the LGBTQIA+ Community

Pride Month
OHS Chief Medical Officer Dr. Stephen Kochis (left), with his husband, Chris, and two dogs, Tiberius and Helo.

A message from Dr. Stephen Kochis, OHS Chief Medical Officer:

All this month, we have been celebrating Pride and the Oregon Humane Society’s commitment to being an ally to the LGBTQIA+ community.

There is special significance today as we mark 52 years since the Stonewall uprising in New York City. It was a turning point in the fight for equality as members of the LGBTQIA+ community demanded change and pushed back after a police raid at The Stonewall Inn in NYC.

While we have made great progress, there is still work to do to fully realize a world where diversity is celebrated and people are free to be their true selves, without fear of violence or discrimination. This is especially true for people of color in the LGBTQIA+ community.

As a member of the LGBTQIA+ community, I found acceptance and was welcomed by the veterinary profession early in my career. Now, I am proud to be part of OHS’s efforts to make our organization one of the safest, most inclusive and equitable places to work.

At OHS, we believe that no one should be judged on the basis of race, ethnicity, religion, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, ability or level of income. Our commitment begins by looking inward at our hiring practices, workplace policies, accessibility of our services and approaches to marketing and organizational culture.

Moving forward, I imagine a place where kindness and love prevail. Because a world where diversity is celebrated — and people are accepted for who they are — is what makes a More Humane Society.