NORTHBROOK, Ill., Dec. 5, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- For the third consecutive year, Astellas has achieved a perfect score on the 2017 Human Rights Campaign Foundation's (HRC) annual Corporate Equality Index (CEI). The CEI is a national benchmarking tool used to rate companies on policies and practices concerning lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) employee equality.
For the last 15 years, HRC has released the CEI Survey to help companies gauge their equality efforts, culture and business practices. The survey rates business practices on a 100-point scale and assesses six core areas: human resources, diversity, staffing, counsel/legal, marketing/communications and corporate giving/foundation relations.
"Through 15 editions of the annual Corporate Equality Index, major private sector employers have demonstrated over and over that inclusion is not just the right thing to do, it makes for a stronger, more successful business," said Deena Fidas, Director of HRC's Workplace Equality Program. "From centuries-old companies to those that have existed for just a few years, major employers have adopted LGBT-inclusive policies and benefits at rates that continue to outpace lawmakers and lead the way forward."
Astellas' benefits cover all lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer/questioning (LGBTQ) employees and their spouses/domestic partners. Coverage includes the company's extended benefits program, StarLife Family Care Solutions. This program amplifies traditional child and elder care offerings to embrace the broader needs of employees, their spouses/partners and their families.
Astellas also supports its LGBTQ employees and their allies through its active employee resource group (ERG), known as TAO (Together as One). This year, Astellas continued its partnership with the Trevor Project to help advance the shared mission of ending suicide among LGBTQ youth by hosting an informative and impactful training session for straight allies of the LGBTQ community at Agensys, Astellas' cancer research facility in Santa Monica, California. In June, Astellas also celebrated with millions in downtown Chicago and on social media by participating for the seventh consecutive year in the annual LGBTQ Pride Parade. Astellas flew the pride flag outside its Americas headquarters during the month of June – LGBTQ Pride Month – and again on National Coming Out Day – Oct. 11, 2016. In addition, TAO joined the company's other ERGs in a 5K walk/run during the National Sales Forum in Las Vegas, where TAO raised funds to support the Tyler Clementi Foundation, a national anti-bullying organization.
"We are honored that the Human Rights Campaign has recognized Astellas with a perfect score on the 2017 Corporate Equality Index for the third consecutive year," said Linda Friedman, senior vice president, general counsel, and TAO's executive sponsor. "Astellas is committed to being an industry leader for diversity and inclusion of all employees, and this recognition highlights that commitment."
For more information on Astellas and our culture initiatives, visit www.astellas.us.
About HRC Corporate Equality Index
The Human Rights Campaign is America's largest civil rights organization working to achieve lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender equality. By inspiring and engaging all Americans, HRC strives to end discrimination against LGBT citizens and realize a nation that achieves fundamental fairness and equality for all.
Astellas is a pharmaceutical company dedicated to improving the health of people around the world through the provision of innovative and reliable pharmaceutical products. For more information on Astellas, please visit our website at www.astellas.us. . For more information on Astellas, please visit our website at www.astellas.us. You can also follow us on Twitter at @AstellasUS, Facebook at www.facebook.com/AstellasUS or LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/company/astellas-pharma.