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  2018 Diversity Holidays

The world is rich with diversity, which is reflected in the observances celebrated by its various cultures and populations. Knowledge of the following diversity holidays and celebrations can enhance your workplace diversity and inclusion efforts.

 

October

October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month. This observance was launched in 1945 when Congress declared the first week in October as “National Employ the Physically Handicapped Week.” In 1998, the week was extended to a month and renamed. The annual event draws attention to employment barriers that still need to be addressed.October is also LGBT History Month, a U.S. observance started in 1994 to recognize lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender history and the history of the gay rights movement.

October 2: Simchat Torah, a Jewish holiday, marks the end of the weekly readings of the Torah. The holy book is read from chapter one of Genesis, to Deuteronomy 34, then back to chapter one again, in acknowledgement of the words of the Torah being a circle; a never ending cycle.

October 8: Canadian Thanksgiving, a chance for people to give thanks for a good harvest and other fortunes in the past year.

October 8: National Indigenous People’s Day, an alternative celebration to Columbus Day, gives recognition to the indigenous populations affected by colonization.

October 11: National Coming Out Day. For those who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender, this day celebrates coming out and the recognition of the 1987 march on Washington for gay and lesbian equality.

October 19: Dussehra (Dasera), the beginning of a ten-day festival celebrated by Hindus to recognize Rama’s victory over evil.

October 20: The day Sikhs celebrate Sri Guru Granth Sahib who is their spiritual guide.