American Airlines Backs Queer Inclusion, But Is It Enough?


American Airlines prides itself on its inclusion and have made great strides in including queer employees in their mix: they’re the first airline to include gender identity in their internal non-discrimination policy. That said, it come as no surprise that the aviation company announced they support non-discrimination legislation for sexuality and gender identity.

Their announcement, however, doesn’t come without its own baggage.

Pledging their support to equality, American Airlines released a press release backing the Employment Non-Discrimination Act:

“(We are) proud to express our strong support of federal workplace non-discrimination legislation that would extend basic job protections to gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender Americans. We are proud to have been the first major airline to implement same-sex domestic partner benefits, first to implement both sexual orientation and gender identity in our workplace non-discrimination policies, and first to have a recognized LGBT employee resource group – GLEAM.

“Our endorsement of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) is consistent with our longstanding Statement of Equal Opportunity … The principles fostered by ENDA are consistent with our corporate principles in treating all employees with fairness and respect. On behalf of our more than 80,000 employees, we appreciate your consideration and encourage Congress to enact this important legislation.”

Though certainly a step in the right direction, trans activists may have something to say about this, because ENDA does not currently include gender identity, but simply sexuality. It’s great that American Airlines supports their queer employees and wants to do more for the rest of the nation, but if it really wanted to make a mark, the company could have come out against ENDA and instead said they’re pushing for gender inclusive legislation.