Same-sex marriage has gained another alley in Minneapolis, Minnesota, reports revealed Thursday. In their company blog, as they announced their endorsement, Target publicly has come out in support of gay marriage. Their name is now signed to a court document that favors marriage equality, and can be seen beneath other big-name companies – Apple, Intel and Starbucks.
Previously, Target had become known as a strong opponent of gay marriage, and was an active member bringing the idea of same-sex unions down. As a way to publicly show their disgust at the concept, the company sent hundreds of thousands of dollars to the 2010 Minnesota Republican Governor Nominee Tom Emmer, who was an extremely vocal opponent. This act cost Target four years of criticism. Some of their customer base, gay-rights activists, voiced the intention to boycott the entire company because of Target’s strong opinions against them. Other retailers, Best Buy and 3M, threatened similarly. In attempt to calm this, Target began offering benefits to all of their same-sex employees.
In 2012, the state of Minnesota had to take a stand on a referendum on gay marriage, and to decide whether or not it should be banned. Most of the big companies throughout the state refused to say one way or the other, including Target. Human Resources’ Executive Vice President Jodee Koziak stated that they believe “everyone should be treated equally under the law,” which includes supporting individuals in their decision of who they should marry. To try and make amends within the gay community, Target has publicly come out as a supporter of gay marriage. The result of the vote came from the state Legislature, who declared in 2013 that Minnesota would recognize same-sex marriage.
When Target displayed its change of heart towards same-sex marriage, and publicly came out as a full-fledged supporter of gay marriage, a huge celebration broke out within the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community in Minnesota. Forgetting the past, the members welcomed the company with open arms, and were excited for Target’s alliance.
“Discrimination should have no place in our society,” Chad Griffin, president of Human Rights Campaign, the nation’s largest gay organization.
The legal director of OutFront in Minnesota, Phil Duran, added to this statement of praise, announcing their approval of Target’s publicly supporting of gay marriage through using their “powerful voice.” Target Corp. as a whole has been striving hard and making up ground lost, including their LGBT customer base. It has been reported that they have once again gained good-standing with the LGBT world. To show their appreciation, the Human Rights Campaign scored Target at a perfect score of 100 in their 2014 Corporate Equality Index. Target, also, has extended benefits to all of their same-sex employees.
Target’s choice of endorsement is set to be heard in the Seventh U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on August 26th of this year. In their court case backing up gay marriage rights, Target has reported that they are also including legal actions that involve Wisconsin and Indiana. Federal district judges, in both of those states, have previously reversed the same-sex marriage ban, to which state officials had appealed.
No copy of the document Target signed has been released for the public eye, only the knowledge that they have publicly come out in support of gay marriage. While the document has not been released, the LGBT community views this as a good step by a major corporation.
By Rachel Roddy