The report lists hundreds of U.S. companies according to their support and non-support for “gay,” lesbian, bisexual and transgender causes. The scale is from zero to 100, with those closest to zero being firms that are not supportive of homosexual policies, and those nearest 100 being very “gay”-friendly.
The criteria include anti-discrimination protections, domestic partner benefits, diversity training and transgender-inclusive benefits.
Besides Pep Boys in the automotive category, other apparent non-supporters for homosexual-related issues include Harley-Davidson, Goodyear, Cooper Tire, Advance Auto Parts and Autozone.
The automotive category of the HRC 2011 Buying Guide shows Pep Boys with a score of zero, meaning the auto-service company does little to promote homosexual causes.
Among the pro-homosexual champions with perfect scores in the car industry are GM, Ford, Chrysler, Toyota, Subaru and Volkswagen.
In the oil and gas category, ExxonMobil, which voluntarily took part in the survey, was given a zero score, meaning its policies are not very favorable to homosexuals.
When contacted by WND about the ranking, ExxonMobil spokeswoman Karen Matusic said, “ExxonMobil benefits coverage is provided to spouses – whether heterosexual
or homosexual – where there is a legal, spousal relationship that is
broadly recognized within the country. For example, in the Netherlands and
Canada where federal laws recognize same-sex relationships, employees with
same-sex partners are eligible for spousal benefits under the ExxonMobil
program. In the United States, since our plans are governed by federal law
(the Employee Retirement Income Security Act, or ERISA), we define ‘spouse’
by reference to U.S. federal law, which, says that a spouse is a person of
the opposite sex.”
She added: “Discrimination and harassment of any form, including sexual
orientation, are not tolerated at ExxonMobil.”
Other low scorers include Sunoco, Hess, Tesoro and Marathon Oil. The highest scores were given to BP, Chevron and Shell Oil.
ExxonMobil provided information to the HRC, and received a score of zero, meaning the energy giant does little to promote homosexual causes.
In the food and beverage category, well-known brands with low scores not promoting homosexual issues include Pilgrim’s Pride, Dole, Corona, Tyson, Nestlé, Hormel, Hostess, Chiquita, Del Monte and J.M. Smucker.
Food giants with high scores favoring LGBT concerns include Anheuser-Busch, MillerCoors, General Mills, Kraft, Hershey, Sara Lee, Campbell Soup, Coca-Cola, Pepsi, Land O’Lakes, Unilever and ConAgra.
The only restaurant giant with a zero score not pushing “gay” causes is OSI Restaurant Partners, which operates Bonefish Grill, Carrabba’s Italian Grill, Cheeseburger in Paradise, Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse and Outback Steakhouse.
Those with the highest scores promoting LGBT issues include Starbucks, McDonald’s, T.G.I. Friday’s and Brinker, which runs Chili’s, Maggiano’s Little Italy and On The Border Mexican Grill & Cantina.
In the category of retailers,some well-known brands not promoting homosexual causes include True Value, Dollar General and Family Dollar.
In the travel and leisure category, those not favoring homosexuals include Carnival, Midwest Air, Frontier Airlines, AirTran and Motel 6.
Those backing “gays” with high scores include major airlines such as American, Delta, Southwest, United, US Airways, JetBlue, Alaska and Continental, as well as brands like Orbitz, Travelocity, Expedia, SeaWorld, Busch Gardens, Disney, Universal Resorts, Marriott, Hyatt, Radisson, Sheraton and Choice Hotels.
The HRC researches policies at more than 1,800 companies, but does not provide a business with an official score until it has collected and verified information it needs. A total of 615 companies made the rankings for the 2011 report.
“More than ever, consumers are sending a message to businesses that they are watching,” the report states. “They are watching to see if the businesses they patronize understand and honor issues important to them, giving buying power to issues ranging from LGBT inclusiveness to environmental protection.”
The HRC itself is pro-homosexual in its outlook, and says, “Whether you are buying a cup of coffee or renovating your home, by supporting businesses that support workplace equality you send a powerful message that LGBT inclusion is good for the bottom line. We hope that you will use this guide as one component when determining if a business’ social practices make it worthy of your dollars.”
For those companies that scored low on the buying guide, meaning they’re not favorite homosexual causes, HRC goes out of its way to suggest to consumers, “If possible, make the choice to support a more fair-minded company.”
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