Verizon Communications is expanding its employment non-discrimination policy to include “gender identity or expression,” and add trans worker protections to its existing, already sexual orientation-inclusive, protected classes.
This move was taken after the Unitarian Universalist Association filed shareholder resolutions with Verizon Communications urging the company to add such protections.
In mid-February, Verizon notified the UUA that it has agreed to adopt the policy, which provides protection to transgender people and those in transition.
“This is a significant victory for the UUA’s shareholder advocacy program,” said Tim Brennan, UUA treasurer and chief financial officer.
Verizon is the latest in a string of major corporations that the UUA has worked to persuade to add gender identity protection to its workplace policies. Over the past five years, the UUA has filed or co-filed shareholder resolutions at multiple companies that resulted in gender identity protection for more than 2.9 million employees, according to Brennan.
The UUA has been instrumental in having several other companies adopt trans-inclusive language, including Walmart, The Home Depot, Travelers Insurance, Procter & Gamble, Family Dollar, Lowe’s, and Dr Pepper Snapple Group. The UUA either filed or co-filed a shareholder resolution with each of those companies.
Currently there exists no federal legislation that protects LGBTs in the workplace, leaving them vulnerable in hostile states.
A trans-inclusive Employment Non Discrimination Act (ENDA) could change that. Find out more about ENDA here.