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Facing down AFA bible-beater boycott, "Pride at Kodak" web site launched

“We will continue to develop a winning and inclusive culture, in which all employees can contribute their best ideas and capabilities. Different perspectives and vigorous debate are critical to developing the best solutions for our increasingly diverse base of customers around the world.”

–Kodak CEO Antonio Perez

Now here is corporate support. As I mentioned in a post on Friday, the American Family Association is asking its sheeple to boycott the top ten gay-friendly employers.

Kodak, on the AFA hit list, has unveiled a new portion of its web site that is now dedicated to displaying the corporate commitment to its GLBT staff, customers and vendors. What a nose-thumbing at the AmTaliban! Let’s see how far they get with this boycott now. It will likely go the way of the aborted Ford, and bellyflop Disney ones. (Rochester Democrat and Chronicle):

The new “Pride at Kodak” site highlights policies and practices, lists achievements in diversity and makes subtle marketing overtures to the GLBT community.

Kodak is believed to be one of the first major corporations to tailor a Web site to this constituency. The company was responding to a grass-roots campaign mobilized by the Lambda Network, an association of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender employees at Kodak. “We went to the company and asked, ‘How can we serve as good ambassadors for the (Kodak) brand?'” said Amy Friend, manager for technical knowledge management in the company’s Health Group and president of Lambda.

…The Web site at www.kodak.com/go/pride was a logical initiative because one of Lambda’s priorities is helping the company market itself to gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender employees. Company research indicates that 14.2 million people identify themselves as gay, lesbian bisexual or transgender. They have an estimated $450 billion in spending power and are highly active in photography, said David Kassnoff, a Kodak spokesman.

To that end, one section of the new site targets consumers. Pride @ Kodak currently provides tips on how to take great images and how to turn them into gift items. The content will be changed on a regular basis.

Friend and Lori Marra, chairwoman of the Lambda marketing task force, say the Web site makes a statement about Kodak’s approach and attitude toward a diverse culture. The site says “that when you come to work for Kodak, you’ll get a warm, fuzzy feeling,” Friend said. “You end up feeling so valued, you want to work for the Kodak brand.”

A gay rights advocate says the new site puts Kodak at the cutting edge and sends an important statement. “I think it’s good for Kodak, it’s good for employees, it’s good for the community to see this. … It’s an incredibly welcoming sign,” said Kris Hinesley, executive director of the Gay Alliance of Genesee Valley. Finding Pride @ Kodak on the site “might be the difference between someone doing business with Kodak, or not.

Kodak was a leader in the field in terms of support for the gay community and a supporter of ENDA. From its site:

Kodak weaves the LGBT community into many of its important corporate strategies. Senior leaders partner with LGBT employees to educate and inform all levels of leadership about the value of creating a safe and equitable environment for all employees.

* Lambda, Kodak’s employee resource group for LGBT employees and allies, began in 1993
* Lambda’s Annual Education Event started in 1995 and now reaches hundreds of employees
* Lambda’s “Can We Talk” workshops have become an effective tool for educating leaders at Kodak and other companies
* In 1997, Kodak started offering domestic partner benefits.
* Kodak’s HR Associates work with Lambda’s HR Partnership Team to understand equitable benefits, policies and practices for LGBT employees.

* Kodak was one of the first companies to implement “Worldwide Guidelines for Employees transitioning in the Workplace.”
* Kodak has long-term relationships with LGBT advocacy organizations such as Out⩵, HRC, GLSEN, and GLAAD.
* Senior leaders have testified on behalf of LGBT legislation such as ENDA (Employee Non-discrimination Act).
* Kodak’s Multicultural Marketing has expanded its outreach to the LGBT segment.

Here’s contact info for Kodak, if you want to send them words of support. It’s guaranteed that they’ll be hearing from the minions of the AFA now, with this very public support of the “homo agenda.”

David Kassnoff
Global Diversity
Phone: 585-724-2137
Fax: 585-724-3828

Mail Address:
Eastman Kodak Company
2/10/KO – Mailstop: 00554
343 State Street
Rochester, NY 14650

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