March 31 – Gathered for Out & Equal’s annual Executive Forum, executives and business leaders made the following statement about yesterday’s introduction of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA):
As out lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) executives and business leaders, we know the importance of creating open and equitable workplaces that foster the innovation we need in today’s markets. Equality in the workplace is vital for business so that employees can focus their best energies on the job at hand and not on discrimination.
Yet LGBT people continue to lose their jobs because of their sexual orientation or gender identity. In the majority of states, it remains legal to fire to someone on this basis alone, regardless of their job performance. Simply put, that is wrong. The majority of Americans believe as we do—that people should be judged on the quality of their work and not on their identities.
That’s why we, as individual business people, support the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), which was introduced in the United States House of Representatives today. We believe that ENDA is an important step in creating a business climate in which people are free to be themselves and to contribute all of their skills and talents to their work. At a time when creating and sustaining jobs is essential to the well-being of our country, we need to be very clear that discrimination removes qualified, experienced employees from their jobs for no good reason.
We applaud the steps that so many companies have taken to ensure that they are doing all that they can to create a strong workforce and a dynamic working environment. When employees can bring all that they are to work, they bring the highest level of creativity, energy, and skill—and that’s exactly what businesses need and deserve.
Stewart Anderson, Business Operations Manager, Hewlett-Packard
Jonathon Aubry, Publisher, The Advocate Group
Selisse Berry, Founding Executive Director, Out & Equal Workplace Advocates
Scott Beth, Vice President of Finance Operations, Intuit
Tara Bunch, Senior Vice President, Hewlett Packard
Laurie Burns, President, Bahama Breeze
Elizabeth L. Carswell
Brett Cook, Director, MassMutual Financial Group
Steven Evans, Vice President, JPMorgan Chase
Rodney Frazier, Director, eDell Global Online, Dell Inc.
Lynda Higgs, Director, Development Operations, Intuit
Julie Hogan, Region Vice President, Xerox Corporation
Nancy Linzy, Academic Dean, St. Louis Community College
Eric Lybeck, Global Privacy Manager, Cargill
Tom Moore, Partner, Ernst & Young LLP
David Perel, Partner, Windward Partners
Scott Reiber, Director, Public Sector Business Development, Xerox Corporation
Kayla Shell, Legal Counsel, Executive Director, Dell Inc.
Andy Smith, Director of Corporate Philanthropy, Texas Instruments
Atticus Tysen, Vice President of Product Development, Intuit Inc.
Elisabeth Warren, Group leader, Portfolio Management and Operations, Genentech
Michael Welch, Chief Financial Officer/Partner, Stephan Pyles Enterprises, LLC
Bobby Wilkinson, Zone Marketing Manager, State Farm Insurance Company
Scott Willoughby, Senior Corporate Counsel, The Clorox Company
Adam Wolf, Operations Manager, Hewlett-Packard
More information about the Executive Forum can be found on our website at http://outandequal.org/execforum.