You know the gay rights movement is making progress when it takes hold in Bentonville, Arkansas. In today’s CNNMoney column, I write about how gay and lesbian Wal-Mart employees organized into a group called Pride and brought changes to the giant retailer. Here’s how it begins:
No big company wants to get caught in the culture wars. But staying on the sidelines isn’t easy when it comes to gay rights.
Just ask Wal-Mart. As the world’s largest retailer has become more gay-friendly, it has provoked a backlash from Christian conservative groups
But there’s no turning back for Wal-Mart, now that its own employees are asking for equal treatment. The next step–and I’d bet it’s not all that far off–will be for Wal-Mart to offer health benefits to the domestic partners of its gay and lesbian employes. Since Wal-Mart employes about 1.3 million people. that would be a dramatic statement. You can read the rest of the column here.
My story in the Dec. 12 issue of FORTUNE, “Queer Inc….How Corporate America Fell in Love with Gays and Lesbians,” has also just been posted on the web here. Please let me know what you think.