The “Don’t Ban Equality” statement was created in response to the alarming trend of bans passing in states in 2019 that restricted access to comprehensive reproductive healthcare, including abortion. More than 330 business leaders have stepped up to say these bans go against their company values and negatively affect efforts to promote equality in the workplace, putting businesses, communities, and the economy at risk.
When S.B. 8 was enacted in Texas in 2021, more than 60 companies once again stood in solidarity to support access to abortion care and denounce the law’s stringent restrictions. Now, as Roe has been overturned in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, the corporate community must rally again. Following the Court’s decision to strike Roe down, 24 states have laws on the books that could outright ban or severely limit access to abortion for tens of millions of women, and only 14 states have passed laws that would explicitly protect the right to abortion.
Top talent wants reproductive health care, including abortion access, included in corporate gender equity efforts. [Source]
- Roughly 7 in 10 respondents (69%) say access to reproductive health care, including abortion, should be part of the issues companies address when it comes to gender issues in the workplace, according to a recent poll by PerryUndem.
- Also in the poll by PerryUndem 68% of top talent say it’s important to them that their company take a stand on social issues, while 51% say they’d consider leaving their current job for an employer with a stronger viewpoint on social issues. Respondents were three times more likely to say they’d be disappointed if their company made a public statement but did not take action on issues related to gender equity and empowerment.
However, Americans are not knowledgeable about the state of abortion rights and access. The Supreme Court case has not broken through to most voters (only 19% have heard “a lot” about it). Most do not know the laws on abortion in their state. Despite elected officials in every state proposing restrictions on abortion in the past year; just 22% of those surveyed say they’ve heard about this in their own state.
A Majority of Consumers Say Reproductive Health Care is Extremely or Very Important [Source]
77% of consumers consider reproductive health care (i.e., access to contraception and abortion) an important issue; 91% of Gen Z and 86% of Millennials say it is important.
7 in 10 consumers believe it is important for brands to take a stand on social issues. And of those who do, 86% want brands to take a stand on reproductive health. This puts reproductive health in line with the desire for action on other social issues, such as gender equity (92%), racial justice (94%) and voting rights (92%).
More than half of Gen Z (56%) and Millennials (55%) would be more likely to buy from a brand that publicly supported reproductive health care. It’s also the case that 41% of all consumers would choose the brand that publicly supported reproductive health over a cheaper alternative and 38% would choose the brand over their very favorite brand. Importantly, this positive reaction overwhelms the potential negative: only 8% would be less likely to buy from a brand taking this type of stance. Even among Conservatives, the “less likely” share is only 14%.
Employees and Consumers Care About Corporate Political Giving that Impacts Abortion Access
By a margin of 50 points, top talent say political contributions to candidates or officials who support abortion bans would make them feel less positively (64%) toward their company vs. more positively (14%). And a majority of consumers believe brands should take a stand by withholding contributions to political candidates who are trying to limit reproductive health care.
For companies, CEOs, and founders that value equality, now is the time to demonstrate your leadership on these issues to customers and employees. If you’re a business leader and want to learn more about how to engage in upcoming efforts, including signing amicus briefs in response to state abortion bans, please fill out this form.
The effort to engage business leaders to sign the “Don’t Ban Equality” statement is led by Planned Parenthood Federation of America, NARAL Pro-Choice America, The American Civil Liberties Union, Rhia Ventures, National Women’s Law Center, and the Center for Reproductive Rights. Tara Health Foundation supports the coalition through grants and research as well as a partnership with McPherson Strategies to provide ongoing coordination and media support for the coalition with additional support from Rebellious PR in communications efforts.