Sodexo Named One of the 2009 DiversityInc Top Ten Employers for LGBT Workers

April 29, 2009

Company ranks 7th overall; employee benefits, executive leadership and affinity network group recognized as top programs

Sodexo Named One of the 2009 DiversityInc Top Ten Employers for LGBT Workers

GAITHERSBURG, Md., April 29, 2009 — Sodexo, a leading integrated food and facilities management services company, moved onto the 2009 DiversityInc list of top ten employers for the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community, thanks in part to increased outreach and partnerships with non-profit organizations that support LGBT individuals and align with Sodexo’s diversity values.

“Sodexo’s actions, such as domestic partnership benefits, visible support by the executive leadership, endorsement of the employee network group of LGBT employees and their allies, and aggressive non-discrimination policies, set the company apart as an employer of choice within the LGBT community,” said Joe Hoffman, chairperson for the People Respecting Individuality, Diversity and Equality (PRIDE) Sodexo employee network group, and a director of Information Systems and Technology for the company.

This marks the first time Sodexo ranked among the top ten companies for LGBT employees on DiversityInc’s index, placing in the number seven spot out of the 401 companies that applied.

Hoffman noted that over the past year Sodexo has expanded its work with non-profits such as CenterLink, which supports the development of strong, sustainable LGBT community centers, and OUT for Work, which supplies programs and resources to help LGBT students successfully transition to the workplace. Sodexo employees serve on boards and volunteer their time, expertise and other support to the wider LGBT community through these and other organizations.

In honoring Sodexo, DiversityInc cited the company’s excellent benefits for LGBT employees and their partners, including bereavement leave, relocation assistance and retiree healthcare benefits. It also noted Sodexo’s mandatory diversity training for managers, including sexual orientation and gender identity.

Overall DiversityInc looked at inclusive benefits for same-sex partners of employees, strong diversity training programs, recruitment efforts aimed at LGBT people and the vitality of the company's LGBT employee-resource group. Sodexo and all other employers on the top ten list received a 100 percent rating on the Human Rights Campaign (HRC)'s Corporate Equality Index (CEI), which measures workplace rights for LGBT individuals.

“Sodexo’s continued focus on creating an environment where you can bring your whole self to work every day is making a better day for the LGBT community,” added Hoffman.

About DiversityInc
Launched in 1997, DiversityInc is the leading business publication connecting diversity and the bottom line, with 1 million unique monthly visitors. DiversityInc.com includes the largest diversity job board in the nation. DiversityInc also produces events and conducts benchmarking, custom research and consulting.

Sodexo, Inc.
Sodexo, Inc. (www.sodexoUSA.com) is a leading integrated facilities management services company in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico, with $7.7 billion (USD) in annual revenue and 120,000 employees. Sodexo serves more than ten million customers daily in corporations, health care, long term care and retirement centers, schools, college campuses, government, and remote sites. Sodexo, Inc., headquartered in Gaithersburg, Md., is a member of Sodexo Group, and funds all administrative costs for the Sodexo Foundation (www.sodexofoundation.org), an independent charitable organization that, since its founding in 1999, has made more than $11 million in grants to fight hunger in America. 

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