Tahlia Carmichael, from our retail team, was surprised and humbled when she was announced as the winner of a competition to design a Vodafone bag celebrating trans inclusion.
“I was surprised – but in the best way possible! I felt really humbled to have my design chosen and it was totally unexpected. I was lucky to be in a room full of my colleagues who were all super supportive and definitely added to the hype at the time,” said Tahlia.
For Trans Day of Visibility 2023, TPG Telecom gave all employees the opportunity to design a bag – with the winning design printed on the Vodafone bags.
“When I saw the competition pop up, I remember encouraging my team to contribute a design because we have an awesome and inclusive in store environment, which I felt I could translate to some really creative ideas. I quickly realised that it was something I wanted to be a part of too and then created my design,” said Tahlia.
Tahlia was inspired by Vodafone’s campaign #ChangetheCourse for trans people. Trans people today face disproportionately higher rates of discrimination, housing instability and homelessness.
“Trans people have always existed and exist everywhere - no matter where in the world we may find ourselves. I wanted to show that Trans awareness and allyship needs to exist on a global scale if we want to change the future experiences of trans people,” said Tahlia.
“I believe in order to advocate for human rights, you must advocate for Trans rights because they are ultimately synonymous.”
Kristy Kelly is Head of Leadership, Belonging and Inclusion.
“We were over-whelmed with all the entries we received in the internal design competition. However, Tahlia’s entry stood out to us because of its graphical representation of inclusion that extends beyond Australia’s borders - it is indeed a global consideration,” said Kristy.
Tahlia believes it’s incredibly important for organisations such as TPG Telecom to support events including Trans Day of Visibility.
“When you look at the statistics surrounding mental health in Transgender youth alone, it’s hard not to feel a responsibility to move to a place of conscious allyship. I’m proud to work for a company like TPG Telecom who takes their commitment to inclusion and equality seriously. I believe if more organisations followed suit, it would be a huge step in the right direction to a more inclusive society where discrimination against the Trans community ceases to exist,” said Tahlia.
Tahlia has some great tips on how to be a trans ally.
“There is an amazing resource on the Minus18 website called How to be a Trans ally. It’s important to stay educated and aware of the everyday things we can shift to make a difference in the lives of others. As an ally, it’s important to consider how you can use your platform (whatever that may be) to elevate the voice of the trans community and help #changethecourse.”