Last year, SFGN covered five LGBT-friendly stores to support while doing your holiday shopping. This year, we’re bringing five more into the spotlight so you can feel twice as good about your purchase knowing you’re promoting an inclusive business.
Big-name companies can make a real difference in shifting the nation toward LGBT acceptance. That’s why this year’s top five holiday shopping stores are all Fortune 500 companies which “represent two-thirds of the U.S. GDP with $12 trillion in revenues, $890 billion in profits, $19 trillion in market value, and employ 28.2 million people worldwide,” according to Fortune’s website.
But these companies don’t just slap pride flags on merchandise to make an easy buck. This year’s selection is based on the Human Rights Campaign’s 2018 Corporate Equality Index, which rates major businesses by their LGBT-inclusive policies.
These businesses are rated based on their nondiscrimination policies, their equitable benefits for LGBT workers and their families, internal education and accountability metrics and public commitment to LGBT equality.
Buying a brand new phone? Apple was one of the 14 top 20 fortune-ranked companies to score a 100 percent of the HRC’s Index. It’ll feel pretty good sporting the Apple iPhone X knowing the company protects its LGBT employees.
In 2015, Apple’s Tim Cook became the first CEO of the Fortune 500 to come out as gay.
“I’m proud to be gay, and I consider being gay among the greatest gifts God has given me,” Cook said in a column for Bloomberg Businessweek. “For years, I’ve been open with many people about my sexual orientation. Plenty of colleagues at Apple know I’m gay, and it doesn’t seem to make a difference in the way they treat me. Of course, I’ve had the good fortune to work at a company that loves creativity and innovation and knows it can only flourish when you embrace people’s differences. Not everyone is so lucky.”
Amazon is also in the top 20, making it the go-to online shopping website worth putting your LGBT dollars toward. On top of that, Amazon is one of the easiest ways to shop without dealing with people. Asocial shoppers delight, because you really can’t compete with that.
“We believe that diversity and inclusion are good for our business, but our commitment is based on something more fundamental than that,” reads Amazon’s Diversity page. “It's simply right. Amazon has always been, and always will be, committed to tolerance and diversity.”
Target was listed under last year’s top five, but it’s just too high up there on the Fortune 500 not to include again. The retailer has expanded an entire Pride collection in select stores and has its own bright and visible special section on their website — including shirts, various types of pride flags and even preferred pronoun buttons. Go Target!
For a new fancy television or sound system — or to pick up the latest gaming system like a Nintendo Switch — Best Buy is the go-to big-name company.
“Our goal is to celebrate all of our employees, tap into their unique talents, experiences, beliefs and backgrounds and to create an engaging work environment, a world-class operation and a company that reflects the diversity of all communities,” Chief Human Resources Officer Paula Baker said in a statement when they were marked a Best Place to Work for LGBT Equality in 2017. “This important recognition further affirms Best Buy’s support for LGBT equality and commitment to diversity and inclusion.”
Nike’s back on the top five list, earning its spot for its BETRUE collection featuring Pride-themed shorts and shoes. The collection began in 2012 to celebrate LGBT Pride Month in a personalized way, and since has raised approximately $2.5 million to support LGBT causes.
“The key for us was to create something that people could unite around to show their support for LGBTQ athletes,” said Robert Goman, LGBT Network Leader at Nike. “Sporting your rainbow in the gym or on a run became a way to feel like you belonged to something larger – you were connected to being ‘out’ or being an ally. The rainbow has and always will be incorporated into the BETRUE product in some way.”