ORLANDO, Fla., Nov. 14, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Darden Restaurants announced today that the company scored 100 out of 100 on the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) 2013 Corporate Equality Index (CEI) for its business practices and policies toward its lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) employees. A record 252 businesses achieved the top rating of 100 percent, with Darden the only restaurant company among them.
"At Darden, we embrace diversity and inclusion as business imperatives that are critical to our success and future growth," said Samir Gupte, senior vice president of Culture for Darden. "We believe that understanding and embracing our unique differences enriches our corporate culture and enables us to be a stronger, high-performing organization."
A total of 889 businesses were rated in the 2013 CEI, including the entire Fortune 500. Six- hundred eighty-eight companies, like Darden, voluntarily participated in the annual survey. Companies are rated on 40 specific policies and practices, including having fully-inclusive equal employment opportunity policies, providing equal employment benefits, demonstrating organizational LGBT competency, evidence of their commitment to equality publicly, and exercising responsible citizenship.Darden was recognized for the following policies and practices:
- Including sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression in its non-discrimination policies;
- Offering health insurance and at least three other domestic partner benefits;
- Benefits coverage for transgender employees;
- Providing diversity training, LGBT employee resource groups and other practices that support LGBT organizational competency; and
- Public engagement with the LGBT community.
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