With the magnitude and severity of anti-LGBTQ+ legislation around the world, companies with global footprints must be mindful in their approach to LGBTQ+ inclusion. However, the complexity of the issue doesn’t mean that companies have an excuse not to act. As Karyn Twaronite of EY says, “Companies can be respectful of local cultures and inclusive — they are not mutually exclusive.”
Not only is equality and inclusion worth promoting as a social issue, but the size and influence of the LGBTQ+ community means multinational organizations can’t afford to ignore this significant market. The global buying power of the LGBTQ+ community is more than $3.7 trillion; at least 10% of the global population identifies as LGBTQ+; and in the United States, the LGBTQ+ community is the fastest growing consumer segment.
A company’s support of the LGBTQ+ community also has ripple effects beyond that one consumer segment. Socially minded individuals – especially younger consumers – expect corporations to prioritize diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI). People want to work for, and buy from, organizations that are truly inclusive of all people. In fact, Adobe found that 61% of Americans consider diversity in advertising important, and a third of respondents say they’ve boycotted a brand due to its lack of representation.