Shop for equality: HRC guide informs LGBT consumers

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Scores highlight best-in-class businesses with equal workplace practices for LGBT employees.

The Human Rights Campaign Foundation has updated and released the popular guide to hundreds of American brands rated on businesses’ treatment of LGBT employees. Buying for Workplace Equality 2012 separates businesses and their consumer products into red, yellow and green categories based on their score on HRC Foundation’s Corporate Equality Index.

The index is a nationally recognized benchmark of LGBT inclusion. The guide is available for download and viewing online at www.hrc.org/BuyersGuide.

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Joe Solmonese of the Human Rights Campaign

Joe Solmonese of the Human Rights Campaign

“The holiday buying season is upon us and this year we again have the chance to send a message to businesses that we are watching,” said HRC President Joe Solmonese. “Fair-minded consumers who care about how a company treats their LGBT employees have a powerful tool in the Buying for Workplace Equality guide. In this economy, when every dollar counts, it is particularly important for companies to see that LGBT inclusion is good for the bottom line.”

 

Companies’ updated scores in this year’s guide reflect more stringent criteria and standards that went into effect with the 2012 CEI, from which the ratings are derived.

This year, the LGBT community’s buying power is estimated at nearly $800 billion, according to research by Witeck-Combs Communications and Marketresearch.com. The research also shows the LGBT community is not only savvy about companies’ inclusive policies, they are also fiercely loyal to those companies who support LGBT workplace equality.

“This is our community’s chance to vote with our dollars and send America’s businesses a clear message that equal treatment of LGBT employees is good for the bottom line. Especially in today’s economy, equality is good business.” said Solmonese.

This is the seventh year the HRC Foundation has published the guide, which has been viewed and downloaded more than 300,000 times at www.hrc.org/BuyersGuide. The Buying for Workplace Equality iPhone application has also been updated and can be downloaded at www.hrc.org/iphone.

Buying for Workplace Equality is an annual publication of the foundation and empowers consumers to make informed purchasing decisions. The guide draws comparisons between products, services and retail outlets that consumers use on a daily basis. The HRC Corporate Equality Index this year rated 850 companies, including the entire Fortune 500. The CEI is the foremost method for businesses to evaluate their diversity and inclusion efforts toward recruiting and retaining LGBT employees, customers and investors (learn more at www.hrc.org/cei).

Categories: “Buying for Workplace Equality” divides businesses and their products into everyday purchasing categories, including:

Apparel & Accessories, Banking & Finance, Food & Beverage, Home & Garden, Restaurants, Technology

Ratings: Businesses and their products are divided based on their CEI rating into red, yellow and green sections so that consumers can easily determine which brands support LGBT workplace equality:

Green (80-100): Businesses/brands that receive our highest workplace equality scores.

Yellow (46-79): Businesses/brands that have taken steps toward a fair-minded workplace and receive a moderate workplace equality score.

Red (0-45): Businesses/brands that receive our lowest workplace equality scores. (Businesses/brands that have not responded to the survey despite repeated attempts have been provided with an unofficial, estimated score based on publicly available information.)

HRC welcomes new relationships with businesses that have not responded to attempts to gather information on LGBT workplace policies and programs.

Some Featured Comparisons:

UPS 100 vs. DHL 15 (estimate)
Nike 100 vs. Adidas/Reebok 15 (estimate)
SUPERVALU 100 vs. Meijer 25
Nordstrom 100 vs. Neiman Marcus 15 (estimate)

On the Web: www.hrc.org/buyersguide; iPhone Application: www.hrc.org/iphone; SMS Text: Text “Shop” and the name of a brand or business to 30644 and a score will be returned.

 

Scores highlight best-in-class businesses with equal workplace practices for LGBT employees.

The Human Rights Campaign Foundation has updated and released the popular guide to hundreds of American brands rated on businesses’ treatment of LGBT employees. Buying for Workplace Equality 2012 separates businesses and their consumer products into red, yellow and green categories based on their score on HRC Foundation’s Corporate Equality Index.