Beyond Workplace Inclusion: HRC Foundation Releases First-Ever Report Detailing Steps for Businesses to Become LGBTQ+ Allies in Action

by Jared Todd

After 20 years of HRC Foundation advancing LGBTQ+ workplace inclusion, the inaugural corporate citizenship report invites companies to close the “ally gap” across all their business operations

Report Identifies Six Pillars Where Businesses Can Make Impact: Workforce, Supply Chain, Products & Services, Marketing, Corporate Philanthropy, & Advocacy & Political Engagement

Report comes at a time when calls for true corporate allyship with the LGBTQ+ community increase as workforce and consumers become more out and allied than ever before

WASHINGTON — Today, the Human Rights Campaign Foundation, the educational arm of the nation’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ+) civil rights organization, released its first-ever Corporate Citizenship Report, The LGBTQ+ Corporate Citizen: A Framework for Emerging Best Practices in Allyship. The new report offers guidance to companies that want to invest in closing the ally gap. The ally gap acknowledges that LGBTQ+ allyship is a journey and describes the space between the intent to be an LGBTQ+ ally and the actions needed to get there. HRC Foundation’s Corporate Citizenship Report is first-of-its-kind, providing in-depth insight, future-focused tips and real world examples for companies looking to put values of diversity, equity and inclusion into action across all their business operations – both internal and external, becoming leading LGBTQ+ corporate citizens.

Being an ally isn’t easy in today’s fraught political environment, and we recognize it’s a journey for many companies that want to do the right thing. But allyship is about more than words. In these changing, fraught times, LGBTQ+ advocates, community members, customers and employees demand action. Our new Corporate Citizenship Report is the roadmap companies are seeking to be allies in action and close the ally gap. The future workforce is more out and allied than ever before in our nation’s history, and the business community is looking for ways to further support LGBTQ+ workers, shareholders and consumers from marketing to workplace policies to political engagement. The work of achieving full lived LGBTQ+ equality comes with questions and challenges as we work to change how some companies have historically done business at the exclusion of so many. Through this report, we invite business leaders to engage more thoughtfully and intentionally with our communities.”

Kelley Robinson, President of the Human Rights Campaign

In a challenging and dangerous political and cultural landscape for LGBTQ+ people, businesses are uniquely positioned to live out their stated values – and benefit their bottom lines – by activating their core business operations in service of inclusion and belonging. HRC Foundation’s Corporate Citizenship Report identifies six pillars of business operations where businesses can make significant impacts:

  1. Workforce

  2. Supply Chain

  3. Products & Services

  4. Marketing

  5. Corporate Philanthropy

  6. Advocacy & Political Engagement

For over 20 years, HRC Foundation has engaged with companies to help them understand that being allies means so much more than a rainbow logo during Pride month. This report serves as a blueprint on how to show up for the LGBTQ+ community across multiple business operations, and take steps to close the ally gap. Our goal at the HRC Foundation is to work with companies, providing educational resources and collaborating on ways for businesses to support the LGBTQ+ community at a time when we face unprecedented attacks. Our first-of-its-kind report creates a clear framework that businesses can use to engage in critical conversations across their operations and with the LGBTQ+ community so they can show up as the best allies they can be while securing long-term success.”

Eric Bloem, Vice President of Programs and Corporate Advocacy

Research shows a clear business case for being a leading LGBTQ+ corporate citizen. If a brand publicly supports and demonstrates a commitment to expanding and protecting LGBTQ+ rights, Americans of ALL ages are two times more likely to buy or use the brand. Research also shows that 71 percent of LGBTQ+ adults in the U.S. are more likely to buy products from companies that purposefully reach out to the LGBTQ+ community. The onus is on companies to lean into LGBTQ+ equality because by 2040, the proportion of Americans who identify as LGTBQ+ is projected to double. According to the HRC Foundation’s analysis of the 17th Annual LGBTQ+ Community Survey, over 80 percent of LGBTQ+ adults want companies to take a political stand to support transgender rights. This is about the current and future workforce as well: Workers are 4.5 times more likely to want to work at a company if it publicly supports and demonstrates a commitment to expanding and protecting LGBTQ+ rights.

Read the full Corporate Citizenship Report HERE.

The Human Rights Campaign Foundation is the educational arm of the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), America's largest civil rights organization working to achieve equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ+) people. Through its programs, the HRC Foundation seeks to make transformational change in the everyday lives of LGBTQ+ people, shedding light on inequity and deepening the public’s understanding of LGBTQ+ issues, with a clear focus on advancing transgender and racial justice. Its work has transformed the landscape for more than 15 million workers, 11 million students, 1 million clients in the adoption and foster care system and so much more. The HRC Foundation provides direct consultation and technical assistance to institutions and communities, driving the advancement of inclusive policies and practices; it builds the capacity of future leaders and allies through fellowship and training programs; and, with the firm belief that we are stronger working together, it forges partnerships with advocates in the U.S. and around the globe to increase our impact and shape the future of our work.

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