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Wed, 27 Jun 2012 10:32:33 GMT | By Diane Bullock and Sterling Wong, Minyanville
Where companies stand on gay rights


In 1999, Boeing was an early adopter of same-sex partner benefits for employees. (© Denis Balibouse/Reuters)
  • Some companies support gay rights with political donations and corporate policies. Others make their opposition known the same way. (© Mario Beauregard/The Canadian Press; Mark LennihanAP Photo; Courtesy Walmart)
  • TD Bank is well known throughout Canada for its support of the LGBT community. (© Mark Lennihan/AP Photo)
  • Telus first opened a Caya store, oriented to the gay, bisexual, transgendered and queer community, in October 2010. (© Mario Beauregard/The Canadian Press)
  • Ben & Jerry's showed its support for same-sex marriage through various new ice cream flavours. (© Courtesy Ben & Jerry's)
  • Google co-founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page contributed $140,000 to help defeat an anti-gay marriage initiative in California.
  • J.C. Penney refused to drop Ellen DeGeneres as a spokeswoman despite threats from an anti-gay organization. (© Rick Wilking/Files/Reuters)
  • In 1999, Boeing was an early adopter of same-sex partner benefits for employees. (© Denis Balibouse/Reuters)
  • Lloyd Blankfein, Goldman Sachs CEO, was recently appointed the first national corporate spokesman for same-sex marriage by the Human Rights Campaign. (© Susan Walsh/AP Photo)
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More than a decade ago, the last place one may have expected to find acceptance of the LGBTQ community would have been inside an aerospace and defence corporation. That's why Boeing (BA.N) made headlines in 1999 for being an early adopter of same-sex domestic partner benefits for employees.

A decade later, Boeing took up the fight to extend domestic partnership rights in Washington State, where the company was founded and retains a significant manufacturing base.

Boeing supported a 2009 referendum on a domestic-partnership law approved by the state legislature. Other Pacific Northwest companies, including Microsoft (MSFT.O), Starbucks (SBUX.O), Nike (NKE.N) and RealNetworks (RNWK.O), were quick to join Boeing in a corporate coalition to advance the cause. (Microsoft owns and publishes MSN Money.)

The state passed same-sex legislation earlier this year, but at the time of this slideshow's publication, a referendum overturning the law appears headed for a November vote.
A joint statement from the coalition read: "Overturning this law would undo years of equal rights progress made in Washington State. We do not believe that this step backward would be in the best interest for the future of our state."

* Bing: Countries that allow same-sex marriage

Image Search for Boeing on Bing
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