Xcel Energy has been named a top corporation for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning (LGBTQ) equality by earning a perfect score on the Human Rights Campaign’s 2018 Corporate Equality Index (CEI). Xcel Energy received the honor by acquiring the full 100 points on the CEI, our second consecutive year with a perfect score, which also earns us the distinction of “Best Places to Work for LGBTQ Equality.” The company has been rated on the CEI for 15 years. The CEI is a national benchmarking tool on corporate diversity policies and practices pertinent to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning (LGBTQ) employees.
“At Xcel Energy, we are committed to our corporate values, including that of promoting a culture of diversity and inclusion, and treating all people with respect,” said Darla Figoli, senior vice president of HR and Employee Services. “We are dedicated to developing a work environment where employees feel valued, and one which allows us to attract and retain the best and brightest talent.”
A diverse and inclusive workplace has significant impacts on the retention and productivity of employees. According to the Human Rights Campaign Foundation in their study – The Cost of the Closet and the Rewards of Inclusion – a striking 51% of LGBTQ workers still hide their identity from co-workers, and employee engagement and productivity suffer in an unwelcoming environment. On the flip side, LGBTQ employee retention is strengthened in an accepting and inclusive environment. Xcel Energy has demonstrated its commitment and core values by maintaining our perfect score.
A history of diversity and inclusion
This year, nearly 947 companies were officially rated in the CEI, and a record 609 earned 100-point scores. The first index in 2002 had 13 top-rated companies. Xcel Energy joined 17 other utility and energy companies in achieving a perfect score, including National Grid, PG&E and Southern Companies. This is up from only ten being recognized last year. The campaign evaluates LGBTQ-related policies and practices corporations nationwide. The rating process takes into account factors such as a company’s equivalency of spousal and partner benefits, equal employment opportunity policy, and LGBTQ-specific public engagement efforts and responsible citizenship.
Since 1995, Xcel Energy has offered benefits to employees’ domestic partners and children, allowing LGBTQ families access to equal benefits. Paul Baagoe-Reed and Julia Eagles, co-chairs of the Business Resource Group SAGE, (Supportive Association for GLBTA Employees) said they are proud to have lead the SAGE committee in supporting the company’s efforts to achieve the perfect score.
A promising future
“Promoting a culture of diversity and inclusion has long been one of Xcel Energy’s corporate values, and we’re proud to be ranked among the top companies in the nation for LGBTQ equality,” said Baagoe-Reed, senior functional analyst, Business Systems, and SAGE co-chair. “We’re equally proud of the progress we’ve made in educating and advocating on issues that are important to our LGBTQ employees.”
To learn more about Diversity and Inclusion at Xcel Energy, visit XpressNET. For more information about the Corporate Equality Index, visit the Human Rights Campaign website.