Equality Virginia believes all Virginians should have the right to a workplace free from discrimination and committed to equality of opportunity without regard to sexual orientation and gender identity or expression.
The plan is build support from the ground up. The path to progress starts with you.
We believe that protecting state employees is the first step in building momentum to protect all LGBT employees. The current political atmosphere in the House of Delegates makes moving legislation forward challenging, which is why we are focusing our efforts on the ground in strategic localities to build broad support for inclusive workplace protections.
In Virginia, there is no statewide law to protect people from discrimination on the basis of their real or perceived sexual orientation or gender identity and expression in the private or public workplace.
A person can legally be fired or refused employment by any employer in Virginia (large or small) on the basis of that person’s real or perceived sexual orientation or gender identity and expression. This means that a person can be fired because someone thinks that they are gay or lesbian or because they are not masculine or feminine enough in dress or demeanor.
Who has joined the campaign to end workplace discrimination?
- Local Leaders for Fairness
- Legislators Who Have Signed The Non-Discrimination Statement
- Localities Supporting Workplace Non-Discrimination
- Colleges and Universities With Inclusive Non-Discrimination Policies
Virginia’s Private Employers
Inclusive non-discrimination policies make good business sense. 88% of the nation’s Fortune 500 companies have non-discrimination policies that include sexual orientation. More than half of these companies also include protections for gender identity. Eight of Virginia’s top ten employers include sexual orientation in their employment policies.
In two polls conducted by a respected bi-partisan polling team, Virginians, regardless of geography or political party, overwhelmingly support LGBT workplace rights. 87% of Virginians agree that gay and lesbian employees have a right to be protected from workplace discrimination. Moreover, 90% said gay and lesbian Virginians should have the right to work for the government.
Virginia’s 25 Largest Private Employers
EV reached out to the state’s top 25 largest employers to check on LGBT-inclusive hiring policies. Companies not revealing their policies are noted. Contact James Parrish, executive director, at email@example.com to be included.
- 80% of Virginia’s 25 largest private employers (20) have non-discrimination policies that include sexual orientation (SO)
- 60% of Virginia’s 25 largest private employers (15) have policies that also include gender identity or expression (GI/E)See the list ►
- Walmart – SO and GI/E
- Huntington Ingalls Industries Inc. – SO
- Sentara (No policy recorded)
- Delhaize Inc. (Food Lion) – SO and GI/E
- Booz Allen Hamilton Inc. – SO and GI/E
- HCA Virginia Health System (No policy recorded)
- Inova – SO
- Capital One Financial Corp. – SO and GI/E
- SAIC Inc. – SO
- Target – SO and GI/E
- Lowes – SO
- Riverside Regional Medical (No policy recorded)
- Kroger – SO and GI/E
- Wells Fargo – SO and GI/E
- MCV Hospitals – SO
- Home Depot – SO and GI/E
- Northrop Grumman Corp. – SO and GI/E
- Bon Secours Richmond Health System (No policy recorded)
- Dominion Resources Inc. – SO and GI/E
- UPS – SO and GI/E
- Ahold USA Inc. (Giant Food) – SO and GI/E
- Roanoke Memorial Community Hospital – SO and GI/E
- Centra Health (No policy recorded)
- Darden Restaurants (Red Lobster/ Olive Garden) – SO and GI/E
- Bank of America – SO and GI/E
Virginia-based companies on the 2013 HRC Corporate Equality Index
The Human Rights Campaign publishes its benchmarking tool on corporate policies and practices related to LGBT employees each year. For 2013, 29 Virginia-based companies were surveyed for the index. The following companies returned responses with inclusive hiring practices.
- 18 companies with policies including sexual orientation & gender identity or expression ►
- Booz Allen Hamilton Inc.
- Capital One Financial Corp.
- CarMax Inc.
- Computer Sciences Corp.
- Dollar Tree Stores Inc.
- Dominion Resources Inc.
- Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corp.
- Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond
- General Dynamics Corp.
- Genworth Financial Inc.
- Hilton Worldwide Inc.
- Hunton and Williams LLP
- McGuireWoods LLP
- Northrop Grumman Corp.
- Software AG USA Inc.
- SRA International
- Volkswagen Group of America Inc.
- WilliamsMullen PC
- 9 companies with policies including sexual orientation only ►
- AES Corp.,
- Amerigroup Corp.
- Gannett Co. Inc.
- MeadWestvaco Corp.
- Norfolk Southern Corp.
- Owens & Minor
- SAIC Inc.
- Smithfield Foods Inc.
- Share your story. Help us make a record of the discrimination that is occurring in Virginia workplaces. Tell your experiences with workplace discrimination through Equality Virginia’s Tell It campaign.
- Download talking points in support of nondiscrimination in the workplace.
- Ask your local elected officials to sign a statement in support of nondiscrimination in the workplace. Download the statement.
- Ask your town or city council or your county board of supervisors to pass a resolution in favor of a statewide law prohibiting discrimination in the workplace. Write us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information. Download the resolution.
- Meet with your members of the Virginia legislature and ask them to sign the statement that they will not discriminate in their offices based on sexual orientation and gender identity or expression. Look up your delegate here. Download the statement.
- Write a letter to the editor in support of nondiscrimination in the workplace.
- Cities and Counties with Non-Discrimination Ordinances that Include Gender Identity, HRC
- Corporate Equality Index, HRC
- Employment Non-discrimination Laws by State, Movement Advancement Project
- Out at Work: A Toolkit for Workplace Equality, Lambda Legal
- National Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce
To connect with more local, state and national organizations, visit Resources.