UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Hussein [official website] told [UN press release] the World Economic Forum on Friday that “companies that take action to end discrimination and support LGBTI communities can be a motor for change.”
Zeid explained that companies that are early adopters of the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights’ (OHCHR) Tackling Discrimination against Lesbian, Gay, Bi, Trans, & Intersex People: Standards of Conduct for Business [report, PDF] play a “crucial leadership role in ensuring the dignity and equality opportunities of LGBTI employees in the workplace and beyond.” Zeid was speaking at a panel titled “Free and Equal: Standing Up for Diversity.”
The standards were published in September. They encourage employers to eliminate unfair treatment against LGBTI people in the workplace and encourage employers to advocate for LGBTI rights in the countries in which they conduct business. Early adopters of the standards include Airbnb, Airbus, AXA, Barilla, Bloomberg L.P., Cisco Systems Inc., Gol, Hermes Investment Management, Lloyd’s, Lush Fresh Handmade Cosmetics – North America, Marriott International, MAS Holdings, Nasdaq, New York Life, Santander Group, Tesco, Trillium Asset Management, Unilever, Vert Asset Management, and Xerox.