Washington, D.C.—Human Rights First today condemned the Hungarian government’s decision to close Central European University (CEU), a top-ranked, graduate-level academic institution accredited in both Hungary and the United States. The Hungarian govern…Read more
HRC released the following statement in response to Wisconsin Republicans’ vote to strip power from…Read more
The Trump-Pence administration’s cruel immigration policies are harming LGBTQ and other asylum seekers who are fleeing violence in Central America by leaving them stranded on the U.S.-Mexico border.
More than 120 LGBTQ asylum seekers are currently stuck in Tijuana, with the number sure to grow in the coming weeks as the arrival of a larger group of people fleeing violence and danger draws closer, according to the San Diego LGBT Community Center and RAICES, an organization that provide vital legal support to immigrants.
“We’ve been working with partners in Tijuana to provide legal services, shelter, security, and more for dozens of LGBTQ+ asylum-seekers stuck waiting weeks for their cases to be heard,” said Jonathan Ryan, executive director of RAICES. “The Trump administration is responsible for this delay, a delay that harms all immigrants but is particularly perilous for LGBTQ+ folks, who face dangers from police and ordinary citizens in Mexico and must be allowed safe entry into the United States.”
Violence associated with gangs and drug trafficking has made Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala some of the world’s most violent countries, with few laws protecting people from violence or discrimination on the basis of their sexual orientation or gender identity. Advocates have said that being LGBTQ substantially increases vulnerability to violence, and transgender individuals face the highest risk.
“People migrate (to the U.S.) because they will die and because they are hungry and because they are in need,” said Andrea Ayala, executive director of Espacio de Mujeres Lesbianas por la Diversidad, an El Salvadoran advocacy group, in a July interview with the Washington Blade. Ayala herself fled to Europe in October after facing a threat to her own life.
Today was emotional.
We accompanied a group of LGBTQ migrants taking the first step of the asylum process at the border near Tijuana. After walking for hundreds of miles seeking safety this was an important milestone. pic.twitter.com/ZsytH5ttBt
— ������������ (@RAICESTEXAS) November 29, 2018
Earlier this month, many LGBTQ asylum seekers, who were facing discrimination and harassment on their journey, split off from the main group of asylum seekers, reaching the U.S. border in Mexico in mid-November.
“We were discriminated against, even in the caravan. People wouldn’t let us into trucks, they made us get in the back of the line for showers, they would call us ugly names,” said Erick Dubon, in a Washington Post article. Dubon is traveling with his boyfriend, Pedro Nehemias, from San Pedro Sula, Honduras.
A 2016 study by UNHCR, the U.N.’s refugee agency, found through its interviews that nearly 90 percent of LGBTQ asylum seekers and refugees reported suffering sexual and gender-based violence in their home countries in Central America. According to reports from the agency, the number of total registered asylum seekers and refugees from the region has grown exponentially — up 58 percent in 2017 from the previous year.
We helped secure safe passage for these LGBTQ+ migrants to Tijuana and are supporting their asylum claims.
Humans supporting humans.
Please watch and share, to see who’s actually in the migrant caravan. pic.twitter.com/Og5xOSVGE7
— ������������ (@RAICESTEXAS) November 20, 2018
“The more authorities in El Salvador, Honduras, Guatemala, Mexico and the USA fail to take action to protect some of the most vulnerable people in the Americas, the more blood they will have on their hands,” said Erika Guevara-Rosas, Americas Director at Amnesty International, in a 2017 report documenting experiences of LGBTQ people fleeing the region.
Earlier this year, international outrage spread after the brutal death of transgender asylum seeker Roxana Hernández, who passed away while in ICE custody after fleeing violence and discrimination in Honduras. An autopsy report made public earlier this week strongly indicated Hernández was beaten in custody and denied water and critical medical treatment before her death, but ICE has refused to release a required report on the circumstances of her death for more than 180 days, in direct contravention of a Congressional requirement.
According to information provided by ICE in response to a request by Rep. Kathleen Rice, LGBTQ immigrants are detained twice as long as other immigrants and also face lengthy stays in solitary confinement despite ICE regulations that stipulate its use as a last resort. ICE also reported to Representative Rice that LGBTQ people accounted for only .14 percent of the people detained by ICE in 2017, but made up 12 percent of reported sexual assault and abuse cases.
The multitude of stories emerging from the waves of asylum seekers and refugees fleeing Central America are heartbreaking and infuriating, and the cruelty they are met with at the hands of the Trump-Pence administration is unacceptable.
As the situation continues to evolve, find out more about how to support the work of organizations providing direct assistance to the LGBTQ asylum seekers in Tijuana, including the San Diego LGBT Community Center, RAICES and the Los Angeles LGBT Center.Read more
Today, HRC Foundation officially launched its second annual HRC Equidad MX: Programa Global de Equidad Laboral, an assessment evaluating LGBT workplace inclusive policies and practices within major Mexican businesses and other employers.
This year, 69 Mexican employers earned the HRC Foundation’s designation of “Best Place to Work for the LGBT Community” or “Mejores Lugares para Trabajar LGBT,” more than doubling the number of Mexican businesses that explicitly support inclusion of LGBT individuals in the workplace, and reflecting the commitment of corporate leaders to advance LGBT equality and foster inclusive and safe workplace environments for their employees.
The 2019 HRC Equidad MX Report assessed major Mexican businesses and multinational companies based on three core pillars of LGBT inclusion:
- Adoption of nondiscrimination policies;
- Creation of employee resource groups or diversity and inclusion councils; and
- Engagement in public activities to support LGBT inclusion.
Following last year’s successful inaugural program in which 32 major employers in Mexico — including PEMEX, the largest company in the country and one of the largest in Latin America — earned the HRC Foundation top LGBT workplace inclusion designation, Equidad MX seeks to expand the network of inclusive employers throughout Mexico.
“We are proud to witness the growth of LGBT-inclusive businesses throughout Mexico. This year’s honorees keenly understand that the economy of the future is built with the diverse talent of today, and that LGBT inclusion is key to attracting and retaining the best workforce,” said Deena Fidas, HRC Director of HRC Equidad MX and HRC Foundation’s Workplace Equality Program. “Mexican multinational companies have enormous economies and employ thousands of people. This gives them the ability to influence change on this issue in a unique way, and we are delighted to recognize them for this commitment.”
Fidas delivered remarks at the Mexico City-based HRC recognition event, supported by the Pride Connection and prominent LGBT-committed Mexican corporate partners. Fidas, who also leads HRC Equidad CL (HRC’s second in-country workplace program) and co-authors the HRC annual Corporate Equality Index (CEI), the premier national benchmarking tool on corporate LGBTQ-inclusive policies and practices in the U.S.
“HRC Equidad MX 2019 is an unprecedented moment for LGBT inclusion in Mexico and the Latin American region,” said Francisco Robledo and Fernando Velázquez, HRC Equidad MX Implementing Partners. “Corporate leaders in Mexico increasingly recognize that when they stand up for LGBT people, including their own employees, customers, and consumers, they promote justice while also serving their bottom line.”
“Respect and support for diversity has been part of Uber’s DNA from day one. We know that one of our main strengths is a diverse and inclusive team that questions the status quo and drives innovation,” said Federico Ranero, CEO of Uber Mexico. “At Uber, we work every day to create a workplace where everyone is respected and included, everyone is able to be who they are, and where authenticity is celebrated as one of our strengths. We are honored to be recognized by HRC Equity MX for second consecutive year.”
“The inclusive culture of Scotiabank is a reflection of our geographical presence. It allows and obligates us to take advantage of the wide range of skills, knowledge and talent in all of our global operations,” said Thayde Olarte, Vice President of Digital Banking at Scotiabank Mexico. “Our diverse talent is both the result of a diverse society and a business strategy. Where there is diverse and inclusive workforce, there is greater productivity, commitment and customer retention.”
Earlier this year, HRC held a two-week series of business workshops, convening corporate leaders and civil society stakeholders to bolster greater LGBT inclusion in Colombia, Chile, Peru, Argentina and Mexico. Through its global workplace equality programs HRC Equidad MX and HRC Equidad CL, the HRC Foundation is leading the effort to advance LGBT workplace inclusion in workplaces across the U.S., Mexico and Chile, impacting more than 14.5 million employees worldwide.
HRC is proud to join with Lexmark México, DELL EMC, Citibanamex, Philip Morris México, Bain & Company, INE, Unilever, SAP México, TE Connectivity, Access Quality, Uber, CompuCom, EY México, Pepsico México, Sony Music Entertainment, Herman Miller, AT&T, México, Coca-Cola FEMSA, J.P. Morgan, Baker McKenzie, Oliver Wyman, Aeroméxico, HSBC México, SONOVA México, Grupo Modelo, Scotiabank México, Lubrizol, Google, Accenture, BASF, Kellogg Company Mexico, Los Cabos International Film Festival, 3M, Petróleos Mexicanos (PEMEX), Grupo Gayosso, Pfizer México, Procter & Gamble, Cisco Systems, Nielsen México, The Boston Consulting Group, Edelman, IBM México, MetLife México, General Motors de México, McKinsey & Company México, Creel, García – Cuéllar, Aiza y Enríquez, Cinépolis, American Airlines, SEPHORA México, Thomson Reuters, Pernod Ricard México, Ford Motor Company, Museo Memoria y Tolerancia, Nike México, Mundo Joven Travel Shop, American Express México, PayPal México, Porter Novelli, Sodexo México On Site Services, Walmart de México y Centroamérica, Softtek, Media Marketing Knowledge Group, Volteo, Microsoft, Facebook México, Diageo, Mastercard, DOW and General Electric to celebrate LGBTQ-inclusion in the workplace.
Here is a list in alphabetical order:
American Express México
Bain & Company
The Boston Consulting Group
Creel, García – Cuéllar, Aiza y Enríquez
Ford Motor Company
General Motors de México
Kellogg Company Mexico
Los Cabos International Film Festival
McKinsey & Company México
Media Marketing Knowledge Group
Mundo Joven Travel Shop
Museo Memoria y Tolerancia
Pernod Ricard México
Petróleos Mexicanos (PEMEX)
Philip Morris México
Procter & Gamble
Sodexo México On Site Services
Sony Music Entertainment
Walmart de México y CentroaméricaRead more
NEW YORK (November 13, 2018) — National Urban League President and CEO Marc H. Morial issued the following statement in response to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s plan to propose a ban on menthol cigarettes:
“The destructive impact of menthol…
Responding to a rising tide of legislative and administrative attempts to further marginalize transgender, gender non-conforming and intersex people – detailed in a recent report by the New York Times on administrative efforts to erase transgender non-discrimination protections through reinterpretation of existing law – 121 additional companies, including 49 enterprise businesses and 73 small and mid-size companies, have joined the Business Statement for Transgender Equality since it was first published on November 1.
178 companies in total have now signed the statement, which asserts that diversity and inclusion are good for business, observes that discrimination significantly harms transgender people and imposes enormous productivity costs, and calls for full equality for transgender, gender non-conforming and intersex people under the law. The full text of the statement is included below.
The companies that have signed the statement represent more than 7 million employees, have a collective annual revenue of more than $3.2 trillion, and are drawn from a broad range of industries including financial services, consumer products, and technology.
Sixteen LGBTQ+ community organizations, led by Out Leadership and the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), have organized the effort to secure corporate signatories. The coalition also includes: Athlete Ally, Freedom for All Americans, GLAAD, GLSEN, Lambda Legal, The Matthew Shepard Foundation, The National Center for Transgender Equality, The National LGBT Chamber of Commerce, The National LGBTQ Task Force, Out & Equal, PFLAG National, The Trevor Project, The Transgender Law Center, and the Transgender Legal Defense and Education Fund (TLDEF).
“We’re deeply inspired to see so many of the world’s leading companies speaking with a united voice in support and defense of transgender, gender non-conforming and intersex people. And we’re grateful to every company that’s signed on, including the Out Leadership members who stood up immediately to call for this statement. As we continue to see in our work around the world, including at our Summits in Australia last week and Asia this week, the business community is serving as a crucial backstop for hard-earned progress on LGBT+ equality – because inclusive cultures are more innovative, more productive, and more efficient, and because it’s the right thing to do.” — Todd Sears, Founder and Principal, Out Leadership
“In one united voice, the business community is making clear they stand with the transgender community against the Trump-Pence administration’s unconscionable efforts to gut enforcement of existing civil rights protections. These businesses are speaking out at a crucially important moment as the LGBTQ community faces relentless attacks on equality. No matter how hard the Trump-Pence administration continues to try, we will not be erased.” — Jay Brown, Acting Senior Vice President for Programs, Research, and Training, Human Rights Campaign
“So often, these discriminatory policies are made in the name of Business, but companies and communities know that discrimination is – in fact – bad for business. Millions of Americans who believe in equality for all are watching – and they’re spending and investing based on this value. Transgender people are deserving of employment, equality, and respect, and the companies who have signed this statement know that, and are stronger for it.” — Erin Uritus, CEO, Out & Equal Workplace Advocates
November 13, 2018
We, the undersigned businesses, stand with the millions of people in America who identify as transgender or gender non-binary, or who are intersex, and call for all such people to be treated with the respect and dignity everyone deserves.
We oppose any administrative and legislative efforts to erase transgender protections through reinterpretation of existing laws and regulations. We also fundamentally oppose any policy or regulation that violates the privacy rights of those that identify as transgender or gender non-binary, or who are intersex.
In the last two decades, dozens of federal courts have affirmed the rights and identities of transgender people. Cognizant of growing medical and scientific consensus, courts have recognized that policies that force people into a binary gender definition determined by birth anatomy fail to reflect the complex realities of gender identity and human biology.
Recognizing that diversity and inclusion are good for business, and that discrimination imposes enormous productivity costs (and exerts undue burdens), hundreds of companies, including the undersigned, have continued to expand inclusion for transgender people across corporate America. Currently more than 80 percent of the Fortune 500 have clear gender identity protections; two-thirds have transgender-inclusive healthcare coverage; hundreds have LGBTQ+ and Allies business resource groups and internal training efforts.
Transgender, gender non-binary, and intersex people are our beloved family members and friends, and our valued team members. What harms them harms our companies.
We call for respect and transparency in policy-making, and for equality under the law for transgender, gender non-binary, and intersex people.
As of November 1, 2018
Adobe Systems Inc.
Automatic Data Processing Inc. (ADP)
Bank of America
Ben & Jerry’s Homemade
Cisco Systems Inc.
The Coca-Cola Company
Corteva Agriscience™, the Agriculture Division of DowDuPont
The Dow Chemical Company
E. I. du Pont de Nemours and Company
JPMorgan Chase & Co.
Levi Strauss & Co.
Lush Fresh Handmade Cosmetics
MGM Resorts International
Ropes & Gray
Royal Bank of Canada
State Street Corporation
Trillium Asset Management
As of November 13, 2018
Allen & Overy
Best Buy Co. Inc.
Hilton Worldwide Inc.
Johnson & Johnson
Perkins & Will
Perkins Coie LLP
Small and Medium-Sized Businesses
As of November 13, 2018
7R Media & Expeditions
AdRoll, Inc., dba AdRoll Group
Bento Box Communications
Braze, Inc. (formerly Appboy)
Callen-Lorde Community Health Center
Combs Advisory Services
Complete Marketing Systems
Cultivating Change Foundation
Donatti Translation & Interpreting
Fernandez & Company
Five North Chocolate
Grand Rounds, Inc
Greater Houston LGBT Chamber of Commerce
Lab Monkey Communications
Lansky Career Consultants
Litmus Software, Inc.
Mango Digital, LLC
Megawatt Analytics, LLC
Modern Columbus Realty
Momentum Psychological Services, PLLC
Nakanishi Research & Consulting LLC
NightSHIFT Communicator’s Network
Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU)
Philadelphia Gay Men’s Chorus
Rathman Consulting & Coaching, Inc.
Rhodes Perry Consulting, LLC
Rudner Law Offices
Shift Technologies, Inc.
Signal Digital, Inc.
Studio 5 – Learning + Development, LLC
Texas Competes Action
The Ally Coalition
Witeck Communications, Inc.Read more
Today, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) released hate crime statistics for 2017 revealing a dist…Read more
Washington, D.C.—In response to the Trump Administration sanctioning 17 individuals for their involvement in the killing of Saudi dissident Jamal Khashoggi, Human Rights First’s Senior Vice President for Policy Rob Berschinski issued the following stat…Read more
Today, in the lead up to November 24 referendums in Taiwan in which marriage equality and inclusion of LGBTQ issues in school curricula are on the ballot, 27 Taiwanese and multinational companies operating in Taiwan released a statement in support of LGBTQ equality. The major businesses are joined by six non-governmental organizations operating in Taiwan and globally.
Noting that diversity and inclusion are good for business, and that discrimination significantly harms LGBTQ people and imposes enormous productivity costs, the statement calls for full equality under the law, including marriage equality and the continued inclusion of LGBTQ issues in school curricula. The full text of the statement is included below.
In total, there are five ballot initiatives on November 24 that will impact LGBTQ people in Taiwan. Three initiatives would harm LGBTQ people, including two attempting to undermine a landmark Taiwanese Constitutional Court decision supporting marriage equality and another that would repeal a portion of the Gender Equity Education Act — which supports LGBTQ inclusion in Taiwan’s school curriculum. In contrast, two other initiatives would affirm marriage equality and the importance of the Gender Equity Education Act.
Last year, Taiwan’s Constitutional Court made international headlines by issuing a first-of-its-kind ruling in Asia affirming marriage equality. The court’s ruling mandated that the Legislative Yuan update Taiwan’s marriage law by May 2019 to allow same-sex couples to marry. While LGBTQ advocates in Taiwan have made important progress in recent years, including majority support for marriage equality and support by the current president of Taiwan, these gains could be threatened by the anti-LGBTQ ballot initiatives.
The companies signing the statement in support of LGBTQ equality represent thousands of employees in Taiwan and are drawn from a broad range of industries, including financial services, consumer products, professional services, and technology. Six LGBTQ organizations, led by the Taiwan Tongzhi (LGBT) Hotline Association, the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), and Out & Equal Workplace Advocates, organized the effort to secure corporate signatories.
“We’re thankful these Taiwanese and multinational companies are speaking in one united voice in support of LGBTQ equality. These companies know that achieving marriage equality in Taiwan is not just the right thing to do, it’s also good for business. We believe that respecting diversity and inclusion can bring harmony and strength to society.” — Jennifer Lu, Taiwan Tongzhi (LGBT) Hotline Association
“These major businesses are speaking out in one united voice to make clear they stand with the Taiwanese LGBTQ community in their fight for equality,” said Ty Cobb, Director of HRC Global, Human Rights Campaign. “This is a pivotal moment for equality in the region, as Taiwan is set to become the first in Asia to recognize marriage equality. In order to keep the momentum moving forward, now more than ever, it’s important that fair-minded voices speak out and voice their support for LGBTQ equality.”
“We applaud these leading Taiwanese and multinational corporations for publicly standing with their LGBTQ employees and the entire community in Taiwan,” said Erin Uritus, CEO, Out & Equal Workplace Advocates. “These companies know that creating an environment where their LGBTQ employees feel welcome and respected – both within their companies and in society more broadly – is not only the right thing to do, it’s also good for business and good for Taiwan.”
Statement in Support of LGBTQ Inclusion in Taiwan
Diversity, inclusion, respect, equality and non-discrimination are values that we cherish and seek to uphold in our companies and in our business dealings. We do this not only because it is the right thing to do, but because it makes our companies and our society stronger and more successful.
Research has shown that a diverse workforce is more creative, productive, and competitive. Policies that support and promote diversity and inclusion in the workplace also help businesses in Taiwan attract and retain the top talent we need to remain competitive in the global economy.
As such, employees in same-sex relationships deserve the same right to marry in Taiwan as other couples. Furthermore, Taiwanese students deserve an education that prepares them to engage in a world where diversity and inclusion is prioritized.
For these reasons, we support marriage equality and diversity and inclusion efforts in Taiwan. We believe our businesses—and Taiwan’s society and economy—are strongest when we put aside our differences and find strength in our commonalities.
Canmeng International Inc.
CASETEK HOLDINGS LIMITED
Oriented Enterprise Co., LTD
QLL PTE. LTD.
Multinational companies in Taiwan
The Dow Chemical Company
Ernst & Young (EY)
JPMorgan Chase & Co.
Taiwan Tongzhi (LGBT) Hotline Association
Human Rights Campaign
Out & Equal Workplace Advocates
Council for Global Equality
Freedom to Marry Global Action
Open for BusinessRead more
Last week’s election saw historic levels of support for transgender people across the country. …Read more