“ZERO FOR ZEROS” CAMPAIGN APPLAUDS MICROSOFT FOR RE-EVALUATING POLITICAL CONTRIBUTIONS TO ANTI-LGBT POLITICIANS

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[Political\LGBTNews]
Zero for Zeros' Campaign Manager Lane Hudson: "As Microsoft conducts its internal review process, we plan to continue our conversations with their leadership and request a permanent commitment not to support the worst of the worst anti-LGBT elected officials. For today, we are excited to say ‘thank you’ to Microsoft for taking this vital first step,”
Photo: Facebook

(WASHINGTON, DC)--The Zero for Zeros campaign issued the following statement yesterday, after learning that Microsoft has suspended its political action committee contributions and is creating employee advisory councils.

“Microsoft is an iconic brand worldwide. Today, they have shown themselves to be strong enough to listen to stakeholders and begin reevaluating their PAC contributions,” stated Lane Hudson, Campaign Manager for Zero for Zeros. “Microsoft was the first company that engaged with Zero for Zeros in good faith. We discussed their concerns, they heard ours and their employees weighed in. We are thrilled that they have responded to our campaign. Their plan looks strong and may ultimately be a model for how other companies can ensure that politicians who undermine the values of a company and its employees do not receive the support of their corporate PACs. As Microsoft conducts its internal review process, we plan to continue our conversations with their leadership and request a permanent commitment not to support the worst of the worst anti-LGBT elected officials. For today, we are excited to say ‘thank you’ to Microsoft for taking this vital first step,” concluded Hudson.

Two weeks ago the Zero for Zeros campaign launched to ask pro-LGBT companies that were supporting anti-LGBT politicians to stop their corporate pac contributions to those elected officials who scored a zero on the Human Rights Campaign’s Congressional Scorecard. Ten Representatives and 19 Senators have been identified by the Zero for Zeros campaign as the worst of the worst anti-LGBT legislators. The Zero for Zeros campaign has reached out to dozens of CEOs, and is in active conversations with a number of companies. Microsoft is the first company to issue a public statement halting their current giving and pledging to reevaluate PAC spending going forward.

The following statement was issued internally to employees who contribute to the Microsoft political action committee on July 23, 2019.

Update to MSPAC Members

"The start of the fiscal year is bringing changes to our employee political action committee, or MSPAC. Today I'd like to share those changes with you.

"We have heard from many employees that greater transparency is needed when it comes to MSPAC policies, giving criteria, and how decisions are made in terms of the candidates we support. Our operations are realigning to reflect that feedback.

"First, we are creating new advisory councils based on Employee Resource Groups and geographies to increase dialogue and transparency. These groups will play a role similar to the PAC's Advisory Council, which provides feedback to the Operating Committee on their approach to contributions. We will announce the formation of the groups later this summer.

"Second, while we take some time to align operations, I've implemented a brief hiatus for political contributions that began July 1 and will be in effect until the fall. Employees should anticipate one additional disclosure that will show the following contributions through the end of June. This giving reflects contributions to a bipartisan group of lawmakers on their work with us on a range of company priorities, including immigration and equality, and policies to promote privacy, climate, trade and the Cloud.

"Third, moving forward, you can look forward to more communication from CELA, and from me personally, about the MSPAC's political giving. As a reminder, employees can engage on Yammer and advertised in-person meetings around campus to learn more about the MSPAC. Additionally, the MSPAC website provides regular updates on events and related activities.

"In closing, I'd like to thank you for your support of MSPAC, which continues to play a key role in our ability to engage with our nation's policy decision makers. MSPAC is made possible by the passion of our engaged employees. It is my goal to remain a trusted steward of our mission.

Thank you for your support, Fred Humphries Jr.

Corporate Vice President, US Government Affairs.

Microsoft

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