Verizon Shareholders Vote Down Protections Based on Gender Identity and Expression
May 09, 2008
From the Bay Area Reporter:
A shareholder proposal to amend Verizon Communications Inc.'s written equal employment policy to explicitly prohibit discrimination based on gender identity was voted down May 1, but backers of the plan say they were encouraged by the amount of support it got, and the group that proposed the resolution will bring it back next year.
Preliminary results showed that the resolution, which was opposed by the company's board of directors, won 17 percent of shareholder approval. It takes 3 percent for a proposal to come back, which it achieved. According to Alberto Canal, of Verizon media relations, more than 2 billion votes were cast. Canal said the company has 340 employees in the Bay Area.I believe the most disheartening piece of news from the Bay Area Reporter piece was the position of the LGBT employee group at Verizon -- they apparently supported the board position (emphasis added):
When asked about the board's stance on the resolution, Verizon's Canal reiterated the company's "zero tolerance" policy. He also said that GLOBE, the company's LGBT employee resource group, supported the position.As a customer that identifies as transgender and transsexual, next month I'll be canceling my service with Verizon -- no matter what the financial cost. I won't do business with a company where even its LGBT employee group won't support a written policy of employment equality for its transgender employees.