After the signing of Indiana’s controversial “religious freedom” law took place, the nation’s eye turned to shine on the Hoosier State. These brands and company representatives took a look too, and have come out against this law.
While there is nothing in the bill that overtly says businesses can now freely discriminate against potential customers based on factors that are objectionable based on business owners’ religion, there is also nothing that says they cannot. Opponents fear this law will pave the way for discrimination based on a person’s sexual orientation, for example. While 20 states now have laws on the books that are similar, they are not all exactly the same (read the differences here).
These companies, brands and representatives have taken issue with the law, and have either pledged to remain freely available for all customers regardless of sexual orientation or have made changes affecting the way they run their business in the state.
— Levi's® (@LEVIS) April 1, 2015
Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff
Today we are canceling all programs that require our customers/employees to travel to Indiana to face discrimination. http://t.co/SvTwyCHxvE
— Marc Benioff (@Benioff) March 26, 2015
Walmart (in response to similar Alabama bill)
— Walmart Inc. (@WalmartInc) March 31, 2015
Apple CEO Tim Cook
Apple is open for everyone. We are deeply disappointed in Indiana's new law and calling on Arkansas Gov. to veto the similar #HB1228.
— Tim Cook (@tim_cook) March 27, 2015
GE CEO Jeff Immelt
— Jeff Immelt (@JeffImmelt) April 1, 2015
— Honey Maid (@HoneyMaidSnacks) April 1, 2015
“We at Subaru do not agree with any legislation that allows for discrimination, or any behavior or act that promotes any form of discrimination,” said Michael McHale, director of corporate communications for Subaru of America. (read more here)
Marriott CEO Arne Sorenson
“The legislation in Indiana — and there are some bills being considered in other states — is not just pure idiocy from a business perspective — and it is that — the notion that you can tell businesses somehow that they are free to discriminate against people based on who they are is madness.” (read more here)
“NASCAR is disappointed by the recent legislation passed in Indiana. We will not embrace nor participate in exclusion or intolerance. We are committed to diversity and inclusion within our sport and therefore will continue to welcome all competitors and fans at our events in the state of Indiana and anywhere else we race.” (full statement here)
Angie’s List CEO Bill Oesterle
“We are putting the ‘Ford Building Project’ on hold until we fully understand the implications of the freedom restoration act on our employees, both current and future. Angie’s List is open to all and discriminates against none and we are hugely disappointed in what this bill represents.” (read more here)
We’re disappointed to see state bills that enshrine discrimination. These bills are unjust and bad for business. We support #EqualityForAll.
— Twitter Public Policy (@Policy) March 30, 2015
“These laws set a terrible precedent that will likely harm the broader economic health of the states where they have been adopted, the businesses currently operating in those states and, most importantly, the consumers who could be victimized under these laws.” (full statement here)