More Than 50 Companies Support Transgender Teen In Supreme Court Case, Could It Be A Hidden Agenda?
Mar 06, 2017 12:21 AM EST
Nearly 50 companies have announced their support for a transgender high school student in a Supreme Court briefing on Thursday. They insist that the 17-year-old's school should allow him to use the bathroom that agrees to his gender identity.
Gavin Grimm, a transgender teenage boy, filed a lawsuit against his school in Gloucester County, Virginia, for prohibiting his from using the male bathroom at his school. According to The Washington News, his lawsuit argues that Title IX, which bars sex discrimination at schools receiving federal financial assistance, also protects against discrimination of gender identity.
To support the transgender teen, giant companies such as Apple, Amazon, and Twitter and smaller brands such as Etsy and Postmates have signed a "friend of the court" brief, according to The Christian Science Monitor. They are determined to reflect their desire "to build and maintain the diverse and inclusive workplaces that are essential to the success of their companies", according to the source.
But experts say that supporting LGBT rights, in this case for the cause of the transgender teen, can prove to be beneficial to the companies more than him. This brings the perception that standing up for diversity and building inclusive brands and workplaces are significant to some large companies for their products and advertising.
That again, makes it not always easy to tell whether companies are genuinely seeking to establish equality or are simply searching for ways to protect themselves from boycotts. Another side of it shows that companies that incorporate LGBT-friendly policies are likely to have productive workplaces with high employee retention, and attract younger professionals that seek companies with socially conscious values.
"A company deciding to spend money and time to pursue a hard-line activist agenda that has nothing to do with their core business is a different issue, and is a waste of investor dollars," Robert Netzly, CEO of Inspire Investing said, sharing his view pertaining the transgender teen case. If that appears to be the matter, companies standing to voice their support may likely influence changes in local and state policy, despite the many sides of interest that they represent.