Tim Cook on Sunday penned an opinion piece for The Wall Street Journal, expressing support for the Employment Nondiscrimination Act. In asking that Congress pass the act, he said, “Protections that promote equality and diversity should not be conditional on someone’s sexual orientation.”
While we could spend time discussing Mr. Cook’s piece, we think it’s best to simply read Mr. Cook’s piece, as his words say what needs to be said. Bravo, Mr. Cook!
Mr. Cook’s WSJ Opinion Column:
Workplace Equality Is Good for Business
One reason why Congress should support the Employment Nondiscrimination Act.
By Tim Cook
Long before I started work as the CEO of Apple, I became aware of a fundamental truth: People are much more willing to give of themselves when they feel that their selves are being fully recognized and embraced.
At Apple, we try to make sure people understand that they don’t have to check their identity at the door. We’re committed to creating a safe and welcoming workplace for all employees, regardless of their race, gender, nationality or sexual orientation.
As we see it, embracing people’s individuality is a matter of basic human dignity and civil rights. It also turns out to be great for the creativity that drives our business. We’ve found that when people feel valued for who they are, they have the comfort and confidence to do the best work of their lives.
Apple’s antidiscrimination policy goes beyond the legal protections U.S. workers currently enjoy under federal law, most notably because we prohibit discrimination against Apple’s gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender employees. A bill now before the U.S. Senate would update those employment laws, at long last, to protect workers against discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.
We urge senators to support the Employment Nondiscrimination Act, and we challenge the House of Representatives to bring it to the floor for a vote.
Protections that promote equality and diversity should not be conditional on someone’s sexual orientation. For too long, too many people have had to hide that part of their identity in the workplace.
Those who have suffered discrimination have paid the greatest price for this lack of legal protection. But ultimately we all pay a price. If our coworkers cannot be themselves in the workplace, they certainly cannot be their best selves. When that happens, we undermine people’s potential and deny ourselves and our society the full benefits of those individuals’ talents.
So long as the law remains silent on the workplace rights of gay and lesbian Americans, we as a nation are effectively consenting to discrimination against them.
Congress should seize the opportunity to strike a blow against such intolerance by approving the Employment Nondiscrimination Act.