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Altria Group, Inc. (Altria) (NYSE: MO) today announces that it received a score of 100 on the Human Rights Campaign Foundation’s 2021 Corporate Equality Index, the nation’s foremost benchmarking survey and report measuring corporate policies and practices related to LGBTQ workplace equality. Altria joins the ranks of 767 major U.S. businesses that also earned top marks this year. This is the fourth year in a row Altria has received a score of 100.
"We know that to be successful in our 10-year Vision to responsibly lead the transition of adult smokers to a non-combustible future we need to be a diverse, inclusive and welcoming place to work," said Billy Gifford, Altria’s Chief Executive Officer. "This recognition is a testament to our employees and Mosaic, our LGBTQ employee resource group, who continuously work to ensure that our LGBTQ colleagues are included and have equal opportunity to grow and thrive."
The CEI rates companies on detailed criteria falling under four central pillars:
Non-discrimination policies across business entities;
Equitable benefits for LGBTQ workers and their families;
Supporting an inclusive culture; and,
Corporate social responsibility.
Altria’s efforts in meeting all of the CEI’s criteria earned a 100 percent ranking and the designation as one of the Best Places to Work for LGBTQ Equality.
"From the previously unimaginable impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, to a long overdue reckoning with racial injustice, 2020 was an unprecedented year. Yet, many businesses across the nation stepped up and continued to prioritize and champion LGBTQ equality," said Alphonso David, Human Rights Campaign President. "This year has shown us that tools like the CEI are crucial in the work to increase equity and inclusion in the workplace, but also that companies must breathe life into these policies and practices in real and tangible ways. Thank you to the companies that understand protecting their LGBTQ employees and consumers from discrimination is not just the right thing to do—but the best business decision."
Altria is proud of its internal and external efforts to promote LGBTQ equality. In 2020 Altria signed on to America Competes, a pledge to oppose discrimination and to support comprehensive nondiscrimination laws that protect all Americans, including LGBTQ people, and supported the passage of the Virginia Values Act, the first comprehensive LGBTQ anti-discrimination legislation to pass in the south. Altria was also recognized last year as one of the "Best-of-the-Best Corporations for Inclusion" by the National LGBT Chamber of Commerce. Altria has also filed amicus briefs supporting important LGBTQ cases, including the Supreme Court’s review of federal non-discrimination laws (Bostock v. Clayton County and R.G. & G.R. Harris Funeral Home v. EEOC) and the Ninth Circuit’s review of Idaho’s law banning transgender women and girls from participating in sports consistent with their gender identity (Hecox v. Little).
The Human Rights Campaign Foundation’s full report is available online at www.hrc.org/cei.
Altria’s wholly-owned subsidiaries include Philip Morris USA Inc. (PM USA), U.S. Smokeless Tobacco Company LLC (USSTC), John Middleton Co. (Middleton), Ste. Michelle Wine Estates Ltd. (Ste. Michelle) and Philip Morris Capital Corporation (PMCC). Altria owns an 80% interest in Helix Innovations LLC (Helix). Altria holds equity investments in Anheuser-Busch InBev SA/NV (ABI), JUUL Labs, Inc. (JUUL) and Cronos Group Inc. (Cronos).
The brand portfolios of Altria’s tobacco operating companies include Marlboro®, Black & Mild®, Copenhagen®,Skoal® and on!®. Ste. Michelle produces and markets premium wines sold under various labels, including Chateau Ste. Michelle®, 14 Hands® and Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars™, and it imports and markets Antinori®, Champagne Nicolas Feuillatte™ and Villa Maria Estate™ products in the United States. Trademarks and service marks related to Altria referenced in this release are the property of Altria or its subsidiaries or are used with permission.
More information about Altria is available at altria.com, or follow Altria on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.
The Human Rights Campaign Foundation
The Human Rights Campaign Foundation is the educational arm of America's largest civil rights organization working to achieve equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual transgender and queer people. HRC envisions a world where LGBTQ people are embraced as full members of society at home, at work and in every community.
Source: Altria Group, Inc.
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