01/28/2022 | by

The Human Rights Campaign Foundation’s Corporate Equality Index, the national benchmarking tool on corporate policies, practices, and benefits pertinent to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer employees, published its Best Places to Work for LGBTQ+ Equality list in late January.

Four REITs, including AvalonBay Communities, Inc. (NYSE: AVB), Equinix, Inc. (Nasdaq: EQIX),Iron Mountain Inc. (NYSE: IRM), and Kimco Realty Corp. (NYSE: KIM), were named to the 2022 list and received 100% rankings on the HRC CEI.

Kimco CEO Conor Flynn, a founding member of Nareit’s Dividends Through Diversity, Equity & Inclusion CEO Council, said in Kimco’s press release announcing the recognition, “We are thrilled to have achieved this important designation, which showcases how we have created an LGBTQ-friendly workplace by adopting critical policies and benefits, and how we continue to help advance the cause of LGBTQ+ equality in our communities and in the broader industry. We continue to work aggressively towards our diversity goals and empower our associates to bring their authentic selves to the workplace. The variety of perspectives and experiences found in our diverse workforce sparks innovation and enriches our company culture.”

Benjamin Schall, CEO and President of AvalonBay, commented on the company’s designation in a press release , stating, “We believe that equality and equal opportunity extends to everyone, no matter who you are or who you love. We’re proud to have this external recognition and endorsement of what we, at AvalonBay, already knew — AvalonBay is a great place to work and is a company that welcomes and supports LGBTQ+ associates.”

Equinix published a blog post about the designation where its authors, Karl Strohmeyer, chief customer and revenue officer, and Brandi Galvin Morandi, chief human resources officer, chief legal officer, general counsel and secretary, wrote:

“Our Equinix Employee Connection Networks (EECN), are created around an identity or community that is underrepresented at Equinix, has faced historical discrimination or share unique challenges. They are led by committed volunteer employees who are instrumental in providing advocacy, guidance, and accountability and we are profoundly grateful for the leadership they provide and the work they accomplish.  It is through the contributions of our EECN volunteer leaders that we can continue our journey to become a leading employer for the LGBTQ+ community.”

Strohmeyer and Morandi added, “PrideConnect, one of nine EECNs at Equinix, was established to create a supportive, positive space for dialogue, learning and allyship within our LGBTQ community. It was through this group of dedicated volunteers that we established our goal of becoming a leading employer for the LGBTQ community. Today we are proud to announce we have come a step closer to that goal, earning a score of 100 on the Human Rights Campaign’s (HRC) Corporate Equality Index (CEI).”

Iron Mountain received the HRC CEI designation for the fifth consecutive year. As one of its core values, Iron Mountain is committed to create and foster an inclusive and diverse work environment for all. Additionally, Iron Mountain provides outreach to and support of the LGBTQ community through its LGBTQ+ and Allies employee resource group (ERG), one of many voluntary and employee-led groups that create a supportive social space for individuals of common interests, backgrounds, or demographic in alignment with the company’s mission and values.  

More information on the Human Rights Campaign and its Corporate Equality Index is available at www.hrc.org/cei.

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