Growing Number of Corporate Leaders Endorse Legislation to End Discrimination Against LGBT Immigrant Families
By Steve Ralls on 10/05/2012 @ 10:00 AM
Contact: Ameesha Sampat / (202) 347-0002, ext. 199 / email@example.com
Immigration Equality Action Fund announced today that industry leaders Ernst & Young LLP, Thomson Reuters and BNP Paribas are the latest to join the organization’s Business Coalition for the Uniting American Families Act (UAFA). The Coalition, now 28 corporations strong, supports Immigration Equality’s legislative advocacy to end discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) immigrant families by calling on Congress to pass S. 821/H.R. 1537. Immigration Equality created the Business Coalition to engage global companies impacted by talented LGBT employees leaving due to immigration restrictions.
“Fortune 500 corporations have led the nation in providing equal benefits to LGBT employees and forbidding discrimination based on sexual orientation,” said Rachel B. Tiven, executive director of Immigration Equality and the Action Fund. “In a globalizing world, however, one area of discrimination remains: international relocation and immigration. Foreign national LGBT employees in the U.S. may not bring non-American partners with them on the dependent visas that heterosexual employees use. As U.S. corporations strive to compete in a global economy, the U.S. continues to lag behind more than two dozen other countries in this critical area of competitiveness. Corporate leaders, like Ernst & Young LLP, BNP Paribas and Thomson Reuters, are able to educate lawmakers with first-hand accounts of the negative impact our discriminatory immigration laws have on businesses.”
Business Coalition members represent a broad array of industries, including travel and hospitality; multi-national consulting and professional services; finance and banking; high-tech corporations; pharmaceuticals; and communications. Showing strong momentum, those signing on this year alone include Ernst & Young LLP, Thomson Reuters, BNP Paribas, Barclays and eBay.
“We are proud to be the first of the Big Four accounting firms to join the Business Coalition for UAFA and advocate for immigration equality for LGBT professionals. We are fully committed to all of our people — regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity — and work to demonstrate this through policy and practice,” said Karyn Twaronite, Americas Inclusiveness Officer, Ernst & Young. “As a global organization, we also view this as an important opportunity to unite with an elite group of businesses that understand the significance of this issue as a matter of both fairness and talent retention.”
“For a company that is committed to human rights, diversity and inclusion, and recruiting and retaining the very best people around the world, immigration equality is a cause that our leadership strongly supports,” Peter Warwick, Chief People Officer of Thomson Reuters, added.
“As a global investment bank, we are committed to both driving retention and fostering inclusion for all of our talent, and there is no question that our LGBT professionals should enjoy equal support in this regard,” said Rachael A. Akohonae, BNP Paribas' Global Head of Diversity CIB. “Joining the Business Coalition for UAFA is a clear step that BNP Paribas has taken to publicly affirm our pride for and commitment to our LGBT talent.”
For more information on the Business Coalition for UAFA, including a list of member companies, visit http://immigrationequalityactionfund.org/legislation/business_coalition_for_uafa/.
About Immigration Equality Action Fund
Immigration Equality Action Fund advocates on Capitol Hill for equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and HIV-positive immigrants and their families. The Action Fund lobbies legislators and other policy makers, builds coalitions, and empowers LGBT immigrant families around the country to fight for change.
About Ernst & Young
Ernst & Young is a global leader in assurance, tax, transaction and advisory services. Worldwide, our 167,000 people are united by our shared values and an unwavering commitment to quality. We make a difference by helping our people, our clients and our wider communities achieve their potential.
For more information, please visit www.ey.com.
About Thomson Reuters
Thomson Reuters is the world's leading source of intelligent information for businesses and professionals. We combine industry expertise with innovative technology to deliver critical information to leading decision makers in the financial and risk, legal, tax and accounting, intellectual property and science and media markets, powered by the world's most trusted news organization. With headquarters in New York and major operations in London and Eagan, Minnesota, Thomson Reuters employs approximately 60,000 people and operates in over 100 countries. For more information, go to www.thomsonreuters.com.
About BNP Paribas
BNP Paribas is a leader in global banking and financial services and one of the strongest banks in the world (Rated AA by Standard & Poor's i.e. 3rd rating out of a scale of 22). Ranked as the 11th-largest company and 7th-largest bank in the world on the 2010” Forbes Global 2000,” BNP Paribas employs over 204,000 people in more than 80 countries across five continents and has over 15,000 employees in the U.S. and Canada. The Group's North American operations comprise Corporate and Investment Banking, Asset Management and Services, and Retail Banking.
For more information, visit http://usa.bnpparibas.com/en/home/default.asp.