The past year has seen a flurry of laws targeting transgender youth introduced in dozens of statehouses across the United States. Most of these laws focus on banning transgender youth from participating in sports or from receiving medical treatment; things have gotten so bad that the Department of Justice weighed in, submitting a statement of interest in two federal courts in support of protecting transgender youth, and opposing these anti-trans laws.
But while these laws are terrifying for transgender young people and their families--even prompting some families to pick up and move to another, more trans-inclusive state--it’s less clear why businesses should be concerned about these anit-trans laws. Here are the top reasons Better World Collaborative hopes your business will consider, as well as some things you can do to fight back in support of trans rights.
Why should my business care about laws targeting transgender youth?
1. Avoid appearing hypocritical
More and more companies are publicly speaking out in support of the LGBTQ community. This may be as simple as changing a company logo to a rainbow flag version during Pride Month, or as complicated as updating internal policies to align with HRC’s Corporate Equality Index. Many companies and brands also donate to LGBTQ organizations, from local community centers to national LGBTQ advocay groups.
Unfortunately, not all companies practice what they preach. A study released in June, 2021, found that 25 large corporations that publicly spoke out in support og LGBTQ rights--including CVS, AT&T, and Walmart--had collectively donated over ten million dollars to politicans who oppose LGBTQ equality. If your company is speaking out for support of the LGBTQ community, you should also speak out against anti-trans bills, like the ones targeting trans youth. Anything less and you run the risk of being branded as a corporate hypocrite.
2. Your employees care about this issue
Employees are increasingly concerned about the values of their employers: One recent survey found that “nearly 80% of workers...say that they want to work for a company that values diversity, equity and inclusion.” Likewise, a company’s values can help distinguish it from the competition, something particularly important in today’s competitive labor market.
To put it more simply, more and more of your employees--both current and potential--want to work for companies that support transgender youth. Not taking this desire seriously means you run the risk of losing employees, or of potential employees not applying for open positions in the first place.
3. Your customers and clients care about this issue
Employees care about corporate values, and so do customers. A 2018 study found that a strong majority of consumers would prefer to give their business to companies that “reflects their personal values and beliefs.” Almost three out of four people in the United States support trans kids in sports, including a majority of Republicans.
Speaking as a transgender person, I know my family and friends are a lot more likely to give their business to companies that support the LGBTQ community.
4. It’s the right thing to do
Putting aside the business case for supporting trans youth, it’s also just the right thing to do.
What can my business do about laws targeting transgender youth?
You can issue a public statement supporting transgender youth, or sign onto existing statements
Craft internal policies that explicitly support transgender employees and transgender family members of employees
Make sure you're only donating to politicians or political organizations that support transgender youth
Share information on social media that supports trans youth, and amplifies activists and organizations that are fighting for trans rights
Ready to learn more?
Contact Better World Collaborative today to schedule an introductory phone call, and learn how what your business can do more to support the trans community.