Ibm, Borders, Ford and Goldman Sachs are among top-rated U.S. companies based on policies that affect gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender...

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IBM, Borders, Ford and Goldman Sachs are among top-rated U.S. companies based on policies that affect gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender employees, the Human Rights Campaign Foundation said in its annual survey.

The Foundation, the largest national lesbian and gay political organization, gave 101 U.S. companies perfect scores on its fourth Corporate Equality Index, up from 56 companies receiving a perfect score.

“IBM made a strategic decision that diversity of all kinds is imperative to its future success and has been a leader in this area for many years,” said Daryl Herrschaft, director of the Human Rights Campaign Foundation’s Workplace Project and lead author of the report.

“Companies are responding to a competitive environment where potential employees and consumers value workplaces free from discrimination of any kind,” he said.

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Corporations are rated in seven categories that include implementing sexual-orientation discrimination policies, offering health-insurance coverage for same-sex partners of employees, offering diversity training and engaging in appropriate marketing to the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender communities.

In 2002, when the Corporate Equality Index was first published, about 690,000 people were employed by the 13 companies that scored 100 percent. In the current survey, 5.6 million people work at the 101 companies that reached 100 percent.