Another three dozen major American corporations have acceded to the demands of homosexual activists in their corporate decision-making process and have been given a top ranking in an activist group’s annual assessment of their accommodations.
The 2006 report from the Human Rights Campaign, which advocates for homosexual issues, was released yesterday and notes that “an unprecedented” 138 major U.S. corporations earned the top rating of 100 percent, up from 101 last year.
Among the majors listed was Ford Motor Corp., which has been the subject of a boycott by conservatives over its advertising efforts within the homosexual community and also last week announced plans for tens of thousands of layoffs or buyouts and an expected operating loss for another three years.
The report said the total companies reaching the top score was up by 10 times in just four years.
“I am incredibly encouraged and optimistic about the findings in this report,” said HRC President Joe Solmonese in a prepared statement. “Companies are not only working to improve their scores, they are actively competing to be ranked the most inclusive and fair-minded in their industry.”
He said companies that years ago instituted “basic equal employment policies” now are accelerating the expansion of benefits.
“This competition sends a clear message that corporate America is rapidly becoming a place of fairness for GLBT Americans,” he said.
He noted last year Raytheon Co. was the only aerospace industry company to get a perfect score, but this year three of its competitors joined the list.
“CEOs are very much aware of their score and its impact on their business,” he said. “They know that a top score means a healthier work environment, greater productivity and the ability to recruit top talent. They also know that a bad score will hurt their bottom line.”
Of the companies assessed, three – ExxonMobil, Meijer Inc. and Perot Systems – obtained a zero score because they do not offer the same benefits to employees choosing an alternative lifestyle as those with traditional lifestyles.
Other companies given lower scores for their unwillingness to sign onto the “gay” agenda include Reebok, Northwest Airlines, The Men’s Wearhouse, J.C. Penney, Abercrombie & Fitch, Nissan, Dun & Bradstreet, Gallup, Ben & Jerry’s, Kroger, Progressive, Ball Corp., Cooper Tire, Dow Jones, Circuit City, Radio Shack and Toys ‘R’ Us.
A one-year boycott of Ford was announced last winter by the American Family Association after the group said Ford reneged on a promise to remain neutral on such social issues as homosexuality.
Just a few weeks later, Bill Ford, chairman and CEO at the time, said the company had met with leaders of homosexual organizations and had made “a historical commitment … that I intend to carry forward” by promising to value all people, regardless of sexual orientation.
Several dozen conservative and Christian organizations joined in the AFA effort. Then last week Ford announced buyouts were being offered to an estimated 75,000 workers, some plants were being closed and that the company did not expect to see a profit for several more years.
The company’s corporate network includes Ford, Lincoln, Mercury, Mazda, Volvo, Jaguar, Land Rover and Aston-Martin vehicles.
The HRC report said 75 percent more companies prohibited discrimination against transgender workers this year than in 2005, 64 percent more implemented at least one “wellness benefit” for transgender workers, and 14 percent more companies targeted the GLBT community in marketing or philanthropic activities.
Of the companies rated, 436 or 98 percent, included sexual orientation in their non-discrimination policies.
The assessment looked at companies on the Fortune 1000, Standard & Poor’s 500 and Forbes’ lists.
Aerospace companies joining Raytheon were Boeing, Honeywell International and Northrop Grumman, the group said.
Apparel companies were represented in the top echelon of “gay” advocates by Gap, Levi Strauss, Liz Claiborne, Nike and Nordstrom while DaimlerChrysler, GM and Volkswagen also were ranked at 100 percent in the auto industry.
The financial industry was flooded with nearly 20 companies at the top ranking, while the computer sector included Apple, Dell, Hewlett-Packard, Lexmark, NCR, Sun Microsystems, Tech Data and Xerox at the top level.
Beer companies Anheuser-Bush and Coors both reached the highest level, and there were no companies in the mail and freight category at the top mark.
The HRC, the largest national homosexual political organization, lobbies Congress and works to ensure that “gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender” Americans can be “open, honest and safe at home, at work and in the community.”
The study rated companies on a scale of 0-100 on whether they have written non-discrimination policies on sexual orientation, whether they support transgender workers and offer “inclusive” health insurance and other benefits, require diversity training and spend advertising money with GLBT organizations.
The assessment also requires companies to refuse to participate in anything that would “undermine the goal of equal rights for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people.”
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