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Companies get even 'gayer' as U.S. economy plummets
Posted By Joe Kovacs On 10/28/2009 @ 8:06 pm In Front Page | Comments Disabled
Fruity Cheerios maker General Mills now ranks among the top companies in America with policies beneficial to homosexual and transgender workers.
Despite an economy languishing in high unemployment and low consumer confidence, more American companies are jumping on the bandwagon to provide support for homosexual and transgender employees.
More than 300 firms have now received perfect 100-percent scores in this fall’s Corporate Equality Index, produced annually by the Human Rights Campaign, which ranks businesses on their “treatment” of employees who have chosen homosexual, lesbian, bisexual and transgender lifestyles.
“Even in the most challenging economy, leading employers are forging ahead of federal and state law to recruit and retain a diverse workforce – regardless of employees’ sexual orientation and gender identity or expression,” said Joe Solmonese, president of the HRC. “While Congress considers a federal law that prohibits workplace discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity or expression, businesses can take immediate steps to ensure all employees in their workforce are treated fairly today.”
Many companies, such as financial leader Morgan Stanley, are thrilled with their top ranking and use it as a public-relations tool.
“Our global top-down commitment to diversity, including LGBT diversity, ensures that each member of the Morgan Stanley family is able to bring his or her full self to the table as a valuable contributor,” said company spokesman Jeffrey Siminoff, who also chairs the Pride Employee Network. “We appreciate the endorsement of our strong and unwavering commitment to our diverse employees, both in terms of another 100-percent (Corporate Equality Index) score and formal recognition by the HRC as a ‘Best Place to Work for LGBT Equality.’”
Supporters of homosexual rights carry a giant rainbow flag as they march through New York City on June 28, 2009.
Andrew Pascal of Wynn Resorts says equality is a cornerstone of the culture at his firm.
“We are strengthened by a diverse group of employees whose unique differences are valued and celebrated at every level of the company,” he said. “We take great pride in this honor, a testament to the fact that fair and equal treatment has empowered our employees.”
Interestingly, that attitude is from the same company whose head, casino mogul Steve Wynn, recently complained the left-leaning policies of President Obama are not just wrong, they’re also dangerous.
“They are trying to change the basic fabric of American life without preparation, homework or experience. And they’re trying to intimidate everybody,” Wynn told the Las Vegas Sun.
The report claims “impressive gains” in policies and protections across the board, but especially for transgender workers.
In 2002, the year it was first published, the Corporate Equality Index noted just 5 percent of businesses banned discrimination based on gender identity or expression. The 2010 report shows that figure has increased exponentially, now standing at 72 percent.
Note: The entire 2010 Corporate Equality Index produced by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation can be viewed here.
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