Groupon, Orbitz among Chicago companies with perfect score on HRC Corporate EquaIity Index

Tue. December 10, 2013 10:44 AM by News Staff

orbitz participates in the 2013 chicago pride parade

photo credit // file

30 Chicago-area companies receive perfect score in a historic year for equal rights

A record number of American companies are championing LGBT rights, according to a new report released Monday by the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), the nation's largest LGBT rights group.

"This will go down in history as the year that corporate support for equality left the boardroom and reached each and every corner of this country," HRC president Chad Griffin said. "Not only do fair-minded companies guarantee fair treatment to millions of LGBT employees in all 50 states, but now those same companies are fighting for full legal equality in state legislatures, in the halls of Congress and before the U.S. Supreme Court."

The 2014 Corporate Equality Index (CEI) rated 934 businesses with 303 achieving the top rating and earning the distinction of "Best Places to Work for LGBT Equality." That number is up from 252 last year.

30 Chicago-area companies satisfied all of the CEI's criteria resulting in a perfect score including non-discrimination workplace protections, domestic partner benefits, transgender-inclusive healthcare benefits, competency programs and public engagement with the LGBT community.

Those companies are: A.T. Kearney Inc., Aon Corp., Baker & McKenzie LLP, BMO Bankcorp Inc., Boeing Co., Chapman and Cutler LLP, Exelon Corp., Groupon Inc., Hinshaw & Culbertson LLP, Huron Consulting Group Inc., Hyatt Hotels Corp., Jenner & Block LLP, Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP, Kirkland & Ellis LLP, Kraft Foods Inc. (Northfield, IL), Leo Burnett Company Inc., Mayer Brown LLP, McDermott Will & Emery LLP, MillerCoors LLC, Navigant Consulting Inc., Northern Trust Corp., Orbitz Worldwide Inc., Schiff Hardin LLP, Sears Holdings Corp. (Hoffman Estates, IL), Seyfarth Shaw LLP, Sidley Austin LLP, Starcom MediaVest Group, United Airlines, Walgreen Co. (Deerfield, IL), Winston & Strawn LLP.

"Orbitz is proud to receive a perfect Corporate Equality Index score for the seventh consecutive year. Equality is core to our company's values and is reflected in how we do business around the world and how we treat our employees and millions of customers," said Barney Harford, CEO of Orbitz Worldwide, which employs almost 1,500 employees, including nearly 800 at its Chicago corporate headquarters. "Orbitz was the only online travel agency to sign the amicus brief urging the Supreme Court to strike down the Defense of Marriage Act and was an early supporter of the Illinois Unites for Marriage coalition."

A number of Chicago-area companies fell just short of the perfect score of 100, including R.R. Donnelley & Sons Co. (90) and Northbrook-based Allstate (85). Telephone & Data Systems Inc. (U.S. Cellular) scored at the bottom of the equality index receiving 15 out of 100.

Since 2002, the CEI has become an important benchmarking tool for businesses in the US regarding lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender equality in the workplace.

PDF: HRC 2014 Corporate Equality Index

Related: Number of companies earning top marks on HRC gay index soars