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Nearly 180 Companies Oppose Alarming Effort to Erase Transgender People From Legal Protections

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

Business statement for transgender equality

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.

Enterprise Businesses

As of November 1, 2018


Adobe Systems Inc.


Altria Group

Amalgamated Bank


American Airlines


Automatic Data Processing Inc. (ADP)

Bank of America

Ben & Jerry’s Homemade

BNY Mellon


Cisco Systems Inc.


Clifford Chance

The Coca-Cola Company

Corning Incorporated

Corteva Agriscience™, the Agriculture Division of DowDuPont

Deutsche Bank

The Dow Chemical Company

E. I. du Pont de Nemours and Company


Fastly, Inc.


Hogan Lovells


IBM Corporation

Intel Corporation

Intuit Inc.

Iron Mountain

JPMorgan Chase & Co.

Levi Strauss & Co.


Lush Fresh Handmade Cosmetics


Marriott International


MGM Resorts International

Microsoft Corp.

Nike, Inc.


Replacements, Ltd.

Ropes & Gray

Royal Bank of Canada

S&P Global


Sheppard Mullin

Sodexo Inc.


State Street Corporation

TiVo Corporation

Trillium Asset Management

Twitter Inc.


Warby Parker


As of November 13, 2018

Allen & Overy


American Express

Asana, Inc.


Best Buy Co. Inc.

BNP Paribas


Cardinal Health

Converse, Inc.

Couchbase, Inc.


Deloitte LLP


Dropbox Inc.

eBay Inc.


Etsy, Inc.



Gap Inc.




Hilton Worldwide Inc.

Johnson & Johnson

Kaiser Permanente







Omnicom Group



Perkins & Will

Perkins Coie LLP

Progressive Insurance


Sanofi US

Shutterstock, Inc.



Squarespace, Inc.

Swiss Re


ViiV Healthcare



Small and Medium-Sized Businesses

As of November 13, 2018

7R Media & Expeditions

AdRoll, Inc., dba AdRoll Group

America Competes


Bento Box Communications



Brain+Trust Partners

Branch Metrics

Braze, Inc. (formerly Appboy)

Callen-Lorde Community Health Center

Chef Software

Civis Analytics

Collective Health

Combs Advisory Services

Complete Marketing Systems

Cultivating Change Foundation

Dallas Voice

Dialog Group

Donatti Translation & Interpreting


EnFocus Strategies

Fernandez & Company

Five North Chocolate


Freedom QA


Grand Rounds, Inc

Greater Houston LGBT Chamber of Commerce





Lab Monkey Communications

Lansky Career Consultants


Litmus Software, Inc.


Mango Digital, LLC

MapAnything, Inc


Megawatt Analytics, LLC


Mitosis Management

Modern Columbus Realty

Momentum Psychological Services, PLLC

Nakanishi Research & Consulting LLC

New Relic

NightSHIFT Communicator’s Network


Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU)

OutSmart Magazine




Philadelphia Gay Men’s Chorus


Rathman Consulting & Coaching, Inc.

Rhodes Perry Consulting, LLC

Rudner Law Offices

Safe Connections

Shift Technologies, Inc.

Signal Digital, Inc.

Sprout Social


Studio 5 – Learning + Development, LLC

SweetRush Inc

Texas Competes Action

The Ally Coalition




Witeck Communications, Inc.

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HISTORIC: 27 Taiwanese and Multinational Companies Speak Out for LGBTQ Equality in Taiwan

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.

Taiwanese companies



Backer-Founder co.ltd

Bounty tavern

Canmeng International Inc.





KUNNEX Incorporated


Oriented Enterprise Co., LTD

Pegatron Corporation

Portico Media



ystudio.co., LTD

Multinational companies in Taiwan


Deutsche Bank

The Dow Chemical Company

Ernst & Young (EY)



IBM Corporation

JPMorgan Chase & Co.



Non-governmental organizations

Taiwan Tongzhi (LGBT) Hotline Association

Human Rights Campaign

Out & Equal Workplace Advocates

Council for Global Equality

Freedom to Marry Global Action

Open for Business

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HRC Endorses Ben Jealous for Maryland Governor

HRC announced its endorsement of Ben Jealous (D) in his bid to become the next governor of Maryland.

“Ben Jealous is a proven leader with the vision and commitment needed to continue moving Maryland forward as a welcoming and inclusive state,” said HRC President Chad Griffin. “As a longtime civil rights champion, Ben is passionately committed to putting people over politics and fighting to expand and protect the civil rights of every individual. HRC is proud to endorse Ben Jealous for governor, and we look forward to working with him to advance LGBTQ equality.”

“In 2012, as national President of the NAACP, I worked closely with the Human Rights Campaign to help make marriage equality law in our state, mobilizing hundreds of thousands of Marylanders to the polls,” said Ben Jealous. “Today, as the Trump administration continues to roll back protections for the LGBTQ+ community, we need leaders at the state level to protect civil rights and civil liberties. I’m proud to receive the endorsement of HRC and as governor, I look forward to working with them to move all our families forward.”

Ben Jealous has extensive experience as a non-profit executive, serving as the past president of the Rosenberg Foundation, and the founding director of Amnesty International’s U.S. Domestic Human Rights Program. At age 35, he was named the youngest ever National President and CEO of the NAACP. During the depths of a national recession, Jealous guided the NAACP through an unprecedented era of growth. He used his background as a community organizer and executive to press the NAACP forward in expanding and protecting the civil rights of all Americans. Throughout his NAACP tenure, Jealous worked with governors from California to Iowa, developing plans to help end mass incarceration and expand civil rights, and helped to pass numerous landmark pieces of legislation during President Obama’s first term in office. In 2013, he was named Marylander of the Year by the Baltimore Sun for helping to lead the successful efforts to abolish the death penalty, pass marriage equality, pass the DREAM Act, and expand voting rights.

In Maryland, HRC has identified more than 1.7 million “Equality Voters,” meaning they are strong supporters of progressive LGBTQ policies including marriage equality, equitable family law, and laws that ban discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity. Last year, HRC announced a coast-to-coast campaign to mobilize voters for the midterm elections called HRC Rising, which represents the largest grassroots expansion in the organization’s 38-year history.

Authority: Friends of Ben Jealous, Jason Small, Treasurer.

Paid for by Human Rights Campaign PAC (www.hrc.org) and not authorized or approved by any federal candidate or candidate’s committee.

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Trump Replaces Secretary of State Rex Tillerson with Anti-LGBTQ Mike Pompeo

Today, HRC released the following statement condemning Trump’s decision to replace Secretary of State Rex Tillerson with anti-LGBTQ Mike Pompeo.

“Mike Pompeo’s longstanding opposition to LGBTQ equality makes him a reckless choice to lead our nation’s diplomatic efforts,” said HRC President Chad Griffin. “The decision to nominate anti-LGBTQ Mike Pompeo could have serious consequences for the United States and LGBTQ people around the globe. The State Department has a crucial role to play in advancing human rights — a role which was already rapidly declining under Tillerson. This decision has the potential to make a dire situation even worse. Pompeo does not deserve to be confirmed.”

Pompeo’s attacks on LGBTQ equality are long and well-documented: he opposes marriage equality, and, as a member of Congress, co-sponsored legislation to allow states to not recognize same-sex marriage and to allow businesses and organizations using taxpayer dollars a license to discriminate against LGBTQ people. Equally as troubling, his political career has been funded by anti-LGBTQ hate groups, including the Family Research Council.

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