When you think McDonald’s, you don’t generally think of their corporate policies on inclusion. But, according to the Human Rights Campaign, or HRC, McDonalds is indeed one of the most LGBT-friendly employers out there. And it’s not alone, in their new Corporate Equality Index.
The Corporate Equality Index is a report card of sorts the HRC issues for companies every year — rating not just a company’s public commitment to LGBT equality, but also the benefits offered, the internal education and policy, and the degree of accountability it has towards its employees. Some businesses found at the top are unsurprising, like long-time lefty Ben & Jerry’s. Others are a bit more under the radar, like Mickey D’s, Coke, and Hershey, although interestingly 609 businesses this year hit the 100% benchmark, and 79% offer at least one trans-friendly health plan, compared to zero in 2002. Yes, zero.
This isn’t a perfect measure of how inclusive a company is, of course. Just because a policy is on the books doesn’t mean it’s enforced. Or, for that matter, that it’s enforced evenly or fairly. But the rapid growth of these policies indicates that if nothing else, these companies are increasingly listening to what their customers and employees are telling them, and changing accordingly.