Gas Companies Lag on LGBT Equality
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Gas companies continue to underperform in lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) equality, according to the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) annual Corporate Equality Index (CEI). The HRC is the nation’s largest LGBT civil rights organization.
A record 366 businesses earned the CEI’s top score of 100 this year, but just one of them — San Ramon, Calif.-based Chevron Corp. — is an oil and gas company.
Other oil and gas companies that made strides this year are Marathon Oil Corp. of Houston, which improved its score to 75 from 15 last year; and ConocoPhillips of Houston, which increased its score to 75 from 55 the previous year. Shell Oil Co. and BP America Inc. were also among the sector’s top performers.
According to the HRC, there were no new survey participants this year from the oil and gas sector, which has the second-worst response rate out of the 40 industries that the organization researches and includes in its annual index.
“Despite repeated invitations and encouragement to participate, only eight oil and gas companies return their surveys and receive an official CEI rating,” said Deena Fidas, director of the HRC Foundation’s Workplace Equality Program. “The remaining 21 Fortune 500-ranked companies in this sector have unofficial scores that we base on our independent research.”
Exxon Mobil Corp. is the only company included in the CEI report with a negative rating.
The purpose of the CEI, which this year had 781 companies actively participating, is to encourage small- and medium-sized companies as well as state and municipal governments to increase workplace acceptance by extending similar inclusive benefits and protections to LGBT employees.
The CEI rates companies and top law firms on detailed criteria falling under five broad categories: non-discrimination policies; employment benefits; demonstrated organizational competency and accountability around LGBT diversity and inclusion; public commitment to LGBT equality; and responsible citizenship.
The full Corporate Equality Index report is available online at www.hrc.org/cei.