Major Employers in Kentucky Oppose Anti-LGBTQ Legislation in the Commonwealth and Nationwide

HRC press release opposing anti-transgender billsFFAA press release opposing anti-transgender bills
Angela Dallara | 646-430-3925 | [email protected]org
Henry Berg-Brousseau | 202-423-2878 | [email protected]

FRANKFORT — Today, BASF, PNC, Honda, PepsiCo, and others are joining more than 160+ major companies vocally opposing anti-LGBTQ+ legislation in Kentucky and across the country – highlighting a wave of legislation targeting LGBTQ+ youth. The list of signatories has more than tripled in the past year and represents tens of thousands of employees in the state of Kentucky.

Business leaders consistently report that they have difficulty with recruitment, retention, and tourism in states that debate or pass legislation that excludes LGBTQ+ people from full participation in daily life, and that includes the children of their valued employees and recruits. These policy fights negatively impact businesses operationally and financially, and needlessly put the safety and wellbeing of their team members and their families at risk.

Last year, a record 26 anti-LGBTQ+ bills were enacted into law across ten states. In 2022, at least 195 anti-LGBTQ bills are already pending in state legislatures, more than half of which specifically target transgender youth and ban them from being able to fully participate in everyday life. Lawmakers from coast to coast are seeking to ban transgender youth from participating in sports; criminalize medically necessary, life-saving healthcare for transgender youth; ban discussion of LGBTQ youth and families in classrooms, effectively erasing our community; revive “bathroom bills” to prohibit transgender young people from simply using the restroom at school; and even undermine companies’ own internal inclusion and safe workplace programs. 

“Across America, employers and businesses large and small agree that we must bring an end to discrimination against LGBTQ workers and their families,” said Kentucky Competes spokesperson and former Secretary of State Trey Grayson. “Attacks on LGBTQ people and transgender youth are un-American and harm Kentucky’s ability to promote the strong assets of our state to tourists, workers, and students – all of whom contribute to strengthening our economy. In order for us to attract best-in-class talent and serve as a major regional hub for commerce, we must make sure that all employees and their families are treated with full dignity and respect. I’m hopeful that leaders in our Commonwealth will take notice of this groundswell of opposition from the business community and act swiftly to stop anti-transgender legislation from becoming law.”

“Major businesses from across the country are standing up and speaking out against anti-transgender legislation targeted at children and other state bills impacting LGBTQ+ workers, customers, and clients,” said Human Rights Campaign Interim President Joni Madison. “Businesses understand that discriminatory laws create unsafe, unhealthy, and unjust conditions in states and communities that make life untenable for families and employees. The parents of transgender young people are being forced to make difficult decisions about where they can live and still provide their children with equal opportunity to be a young person and receive appropriate healthcare. With every bill that passes, those options become more and more limited, shrinking the space in which transgender young people are allowed to exist without fear for their safety or threats upon their health and wellbeing. Companies are choosing to support their employees and their families, and if legislators are interested in ensuring a strong business climate that attracts the top talent across the country, they must stop advancing legislation that discriminates against transgender youth and LGBTQ+ people.”

“Business leaders across a variety of innovative industries and sectors continue to make it clear that inclusive environments are pro-business environments,” said Kasey Suffredini, CEO and National Campaign Director of Freedom for All Americans, the campaign to secure LGBTQ nondiscrimination protections nationwide. “The cruel legislative attacks on LGBTQ+ people, particularly transgender young people, at the state level harm real families, and they also add to businesses’ operational, recruitment, and retention challenges in an already tight job market. As states continue to recover from the pandemic, legislators should focus on policies that lift up our local economies, not make it even more difficult for vulnerable families to take care of themselves and their loved ones.”

The business statement reads as follows:

The companies joining this statement do business, create jobs, and serve customers throughout the United States. Our businesses strongly embrace diversity and inclusion because we want everyone who works for us or does business with us to feel included and welcomed as their true, authentic selves. Fairness, equal treatment, and opportunity are central to our corporate values because we care about our employees and the customers we serve. What’s more, these values also matter to our bottom lines. Inclusive business practices lead to more productive and engaged employees, increased customer satisfaction; and, ultimately, improved competitiveness and financial performance.

We are deeply concerned by the bills being introduced in state houses across the country that single out LGBTQ individuals – many specifically targeting transgender youth – for exclusion or differential treatment. Laws that would affect access to medical care for transgender people, parental rights, social and family services, student sports, or access to public facilities such as restrooms, unnecessarily and uncharitably single out already marginalized groups for additional disadvantage. They seek to put the authority of state government behind discrimination and promote mistreatment of a targeted LBGTQ population.

These bills would harm our team members and their families, stripping them of opportunities and making them feel unwelcome and at risk in their own communities. As such, it can be exceedingly difficult for us to recruit the most qualified candidates for jobs in states that pursue such laws, and these measures can place substantial burdens on the families of our employees who already reside in these states. Legislation promoting discrimination directly affects our businesses, whether or not it occurs in the workplace.

As we make complex decisions about where to invest and grow, these issues can influence our decisions. America’s business community has consistently communicated to lawmakers at every level that such laws have a negative effect on our employees, our customers, our competitiveness, and state and national economies.

As business leaders dedicated to equal treatment, respect, and opportunity for all – as well as to improving the financial and investment climate across the country – we call for public leaders to abandon or oppose efforts to enact this type of discriminatory legislation and ensure fairness for all Americans.

National Business Statement Opposing Anti-LGBTQ State Legislation

FFAA: National Business Statement Opposing Anti-LGBTQ State Legislation

Signed:

2U, Inc.
23andMe
Accenture
Acxiom LLC
The Adecco Group
Adobe, Inc.

Advance Auto Parts
AEO Inc.
Affirm
Airbnb
AllianceBernstein
Ally
Altria Group Inc.
Amalgamated Bank
Amazon
American Airlines
American Express
American Honda Motor Company
Amgen, Inc.
Anaplan
Apple
Applied Materials, Inc.
Arcadis U.S. Inc.
Asana, Inc.
AT&T
Atlassian
Bayer US LLC
BASF Corporation
BBVA USA
BCW (Burson Cohn & Wolfe)
Ben & Jerry’s Homemade, Inc.
Berkshire Bank
Biogen
Block, Inc. (formerly Square, Inc.)
Bloomberg LP
Boehringer Ingelheim USA
Boston Scientific
Bounteous
Brown-Forman Corporation
CNA Insurance
CVS Health
Capital One
Cardinal Health
Cargill
Cargo Transporters, Inc.
Celanese
Center for Community Self-Help
Chobani
Citigroup, Inc.
The College Board
Corning Incorporated
CSAA Insurance Group
Curology
Dechert LLP
Deckers Brands (UGG, HOKA, Teva, Sanuk, and Koolaburra by UGG)
Dell Technologies
Dow Inc.
Dropbox Inc.
EMD Serono, MilliporeSigma and EMD Electronics
Early Warning Services, LLC
Eastern Bank
Elanco Animal Health
Equinix
Equitable
FactSet Research Systems, Inc.
Fastly
Flexport, Inc.
GP Strategies Corporation
Gap, Inc.
Gearbox
General Mills
GoDaddy
Google
Gusto
H&M
HP, Inc.
HSBC Bank USA
Hilton
IBM Corp.
ICM Partners
IHG Hotels & Resorts
IHS Markit
IKEA North America Services, LLC
Included Health
Instacart
Intel
Interpublic Group
Intuit
Invitae Corporation
Johnson & Johnson
Kellogg Company
The Knot Worldwide
The Kraft Heinz Company
LinkedIn
LegalZoom
Levi Strauss & Co.
Lush Fresh Handmade Cosmetics
Lyft, Inc.
Macy’s, Inc.
Mailchimp
Marriott International, Inc.
Marsh McLennan
MassMutual
Medtronic PLC
Meta
MetLife, Inc.
Micron
Microsoft
Mobilize
Molson Coors Beverage Company
Momentive
Mondelez International
New Belgium Brewing
NextRoll, Inc.
Nike, Inc.
Nuance Communications
Oracle Corporation
PNC Financial Services Group
Patagonia
Patreon
PayPal
Peloton Interactive, Inc.
PepsiCo, Inc.
Pfizer Inc.
Pinterest
REI Co-op
Randstad US
Red Hat, Inc.
Redfin Real Estate
Royal Bank of Canada
SAP
Salesforce
Shipt, Inc.
Shutterstock
Silicon Labs
Signet Jewelers
Starbucks
State Street Corporation
Sun Life
Sustainable Food Policy Alliance, including member companies Danone North America; Mars, Incorporated; Nestlé USA; and Unilever United States
Symetra Life Insurance Company
Synchrony Financial
Target
TechNet
Teva Pharmaceuticals
Thermo Fisher Scientific
T-Mobile
Trillium Asset Management
TriNet Group, Inc.
Tripadvisor
Twitter, Inc.
Uber
Unilever United States
Union Pacific
United Airlines
Verizon
VMLY&R
VMware
Warby Parker
Warner Music Group
Wayside Youth & Family Support Network
Wells Fargo
Workday, Inc.
Xperi Holding Corporation
Xylem
Yahoo! Inc.
Yelp Inc.
Yext
Zillow


Freedom for All Americans is the bipartisan campaign to secure full nondiscrimination protections for LGBTQ people nationwide. Our work brings together Republicans and Democrats, businesses large and small, people of faith, and allies from all walks of life to make the case for comprehensive nondiscrimination protections that ensure everyone is treated fairly and equally.

www.freedomforallamericans.org
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