Human Rights Campaign Calls on Target to Stand Firm in Support for LGBTQ+ Community; Reject Threats from Conservative Extremists

by Jared Todd

WASHINGTON — Amid extremist anti-LGBTQ+ rhetoric and attacks on businesses that stand by values of diversity and inclusion, retail giant Target is the latest center of attack for extremist groups. In response, it’s been reported that Target is pulling some of its Pride merchandise from its sales floors across the country.

President of the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) Kelley Robinson released the following statement:

Target should not be responding so easily to criticism and threats from the likes of the Proud Boys. Target should put the products back on the shelves and ensure their Pride displays are visible on the floors, not pushed into the proverbial closet. That’s what the bullies want. Target must be better.

Extremist groups and individuals work to divide us and ultimately don’t just want rainbow products to disappear, they want us to disappear. For the past decade, the LGBTQ+ community has celebrated Pride with Target—it’s time that Target stands with us and doubles-down on their commitment to us.

Going into Pride Month – a protest for our fundamental rights and a celebration of visibility and queer joy – businesses play a bigger role than they ever have before in advancing LGBTQ+ inclusion and representation. The LGBTQ+ community has been experiencing our worst year on record for anti-LGBTQ+ legislation – over 520 bills that aim to strip us of our very existence, dignity and history, from the doctor’s office to the classroom to the sports field.

Businesses that are silent or are retreating at a time when anti-LGBTQ+ hatred, from statehouses to social media platforms, is at an all time high are abdicating their responsibility to stand by their values of diversity, equity and inclusion. We’ve seen it again and again: businesses that stand up for the values they espouse send a powerful message to their employees, shareholders and customers that equality is not up for debate. Every time businesses stand up and speak out for LGBTQ+ equality, they come out on top, regardless of baseless, anti-business attacks.

The Human Rights Campaign is America’s largest civil rights organization working to achieve equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer people. HRC envisions a world where LGBTQ+ people are embraced as full members of society at home, at work and in every community.

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