Ernst & Young LLP, Thomson Reuters and BNP Paribas are the most recent businesses to join Immigration Equality’s Business Coalition for the Uniting American Families Act (UAFA). The Coalition, which now includes 28 corporations, is urging Congress to pass S. 821/H.R. 1537. Currently, LGBT employees in the U.S. who have foreign partners can’t sponsor those partners for immigration purposes, and foreign LGBT employees working in the U.S. can’t bring non-American partners with them on dependent visas. As many as 36,000 gay and lesbian couples are said to be affected by this legal inequality, and 46% of them have children.
“We are proud to be the first of the Big Four accounting firms to join the Business Coalition for UAFA and advocate for immigration equality for LGBT professionals. We are fully committed to all of our people — regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity — and work to demonstrate this through policy and practice,” said Karyn Twaronite, Americas Inclusiveness Officer for Ernst & Young.
GLAAD and many organizations have worked to raise visibility of same-sex couples who risk being torn apart because of immigration practices including Brian Andersen and Anton Tanumihardja of Philadelphia.
“Fortune 500 corporations have led the nation in providing equal benefits to LGBT employees and forbidding discrimination based on sexual orientation,” said Rachel B. Tiven, executive director of Immigration Equality and the Action Fund. “In a globalizing world, however, one area of discrimination remains: international relocation and immigration. As U.S. corporations strive to compete in a global economy, the U.S. continues to lag behind more than two dozen other countries in this critical area of competitiveness. Corporate leaders, like Ernst & Young LLP, BNP Paribas and Thomson Reuters, are able to educate lawmakers with first-hand accounts of the negative impact our discriminatory immigration laws have on businesses.”
The Business Coalition Includes:
American Airlines, Bain & Company, Barclays, Bausch & Lomb, BNP Paribas, Boehringer Ingelheim USA, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Carlson, Cisco Systems, Diageo, The Dow Chemical Company, eBay, Ernst & Young LLP, The Estée Lauder Companies, Fifth & Pacific Companies, Goldman Sachs, Intel, Marriott International, Medtronic, Merck & Co., Inc., Nike, Ogilvy & Mather, Omnicom, Pfizer, Replacements, Ltd., Starwood, Texas Instruments, Thomson Reuters