Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island Awarded Perfect Score in 2016 Corporate Equality Index

(11.30.2015)
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Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island (BCBSRI) received a score of 100 percent on the 2016 Corporate Equality Index (CEI), a national benchmarking survey and report on corporate policies and practices relating to lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) workplace equality. The CEI is administered by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation. Last year, BCBSRI was one of only two Rhode Island companies to receive a perfect score, a reflection of its commitment to LGBT workplace equality with respect to tangible policies, benefits, and practices. 
 
BCBSRI maintained its perfect score even as HRC made three key changes to its 2016 CEI survey and report. These changes require that businesses include sexual orientation and gender identity protection in all operations and that US contractors abide by companies’ existing non-discrimination policies. The changes also prohibit company philanthropic giving to non-religious organizations that do not have a written policy on sexual orientation and/or gender identity discrimination.    
 
BCBSRI was recognized for its workplace practices including a non-discrimination policy and an executive performance appraisal model containing a diversity and inclusion component, as well as for extending health coverage to same-sex spouses and domestic partners and providing coverage for gender reassignment surgery. Additionally, BCBSRI implemented a “Safe Zone” certification practice intended to identify community healthcare providers that self-identify as supportive of LGBTQ patients. This certification reflects one of BCBSRI’s primary goals of creating environments in which LGBTQ members feel comfortable in their health community. BCBSRI also continues to provide philanthropic support to local LGBTQ nonprofit organizations.
 
“Blue Cross continues to create an environment that is rich with multiple perspectives and ideas that enable us to relate to the diverse populations we serve,” said Visael “Bobby” Rodriguez, Vice President, Human Resources & Chief Diversity Officer, BCBSRI.  “We are proud to have maintained a perfect score of 100 percent from last year and to continue to be ranked as a best place to work for LGBTQ equality.”
 
The 2016 CEI rated 851 corporations and evaluates LGBT-related policies and best practices including non-discrimination workplace protections, domestic partner benefits, transgender-inclusive health care benefits, competency programs, and public engagement with the LGBT community.
 
For more information on the 2016 Corporate Equality Index, or to download a free copy of the report, visit www.hrc.org/cei.
 
 
 
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