5 Brands that Support LGBTQ+ Community Beyond Pride Month

These brands have a firm commitment towards inclusion of the LGBTQ+ community through affirmative action all year round for promoting equality and justice.

Brands that Support LGBTQ

Did you know that a major ice-cream brand announced in 2017 that it would stop serving two scoops of the same flavor in Australia as a mark of protest against the denial of the Australian government to legalize same-sex marriages? Read on to find out the name of 5 brands that support LGBTQ community beyond Pride Month.


Come June, and we see the most colorful marches organized by the LGBTQIA+ community all over the world. It is as much a month of celebration for the vibrant community as also of protest against the prejudice to which its members are subjected routinely.

What is blinding during the period leading up to Pride Month is the blatant pinkwashing by brands, big and small alike, shamelessly clamoring to assure how queer-friendly and inclusive they are, with little if any real support for the community. The campaigns are shallow and if you go a little deeper, most of them reek of ill-intentioned exploitation of a sensitive cause.

In this article, we will be discussing about the brands with progressive values supporting LGBTQ+ community round the year. The brands do this through affirmative action, including advocacy, engagement, corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiatives, and so on. Let us now get straight down to the

5 Brands that Support LGBTQ+ Community Year Round

Ben & Jerry’s

The iconic ice-cream brand founded in Vermont was acquired by the multinational behemoth Unilever in the year 2000. By now you must have guessed that this is the brand referred to in the opening paragraph. 

Internal Policies

  • As early as 1989, the company had introduced equal benefits for partners of employees, irrespective of their sex.
  • In the year 2015, the brand was awarded the highest possible score on the Corporate Equality Index Rating, published by the Human Rights Campaign (HRC). The index ranks companies across industries on how well they are supporting LGBTQ+ rights in the workplace. 
  • Ben & Jerry’s website states that it is “committed to achieving equity, opportunity and justice for communities across the globe that have been historically marginalized”. The website prominently features “LGBTQ+ Rights” as one of the causes that the company cares about. 


Ben & Jerry’s has a tradition of applauding and celebrating progressive policies for inclusion of the LGBTQ+ community. For instance, in celebration of the legalization of same-sex marriage by the US Supreme Court, the company renamed its popular “Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough” flavor as “I DOugh, I DOugh” for the summer.


The company takes a firm political stand on issues that are otherwise avoided by other companies for the fear of alienating communities and taking a hit on the bottom lines. The company tweets frequently from its official Twitter handle in support of the LGBTQ+ community issues, such as trans rights, anti-trans bills in the US. 

CSR Initiative

The brand has teamed up with NGOs working for the LGBTQ+ cause in the past including Stonewall in the UK and Miłość Nie Wyklucza in Wolontariat Równości, Poland.

Absolut Vodka

Absolut Vodka is of Swedish origin which has been a part of the French company Pernod Ricard since 2008. The brand bravely speaks of its friendship with the LGBTQ+ community on the main page of its most iconic product. 

Website of Absolut Vodka about Friendship with LGBTQ+


  • In 2008, the brand collaborated with Gilbert Baker, a major figure of the LGBTQ+ movement and designer of the Pride Flag, and launched the Pride Bottle on the occasion of the 30th anniversary of the Pride Flag. A decade later, the company made the Rainbow bottle a permanent feature in its product line as a “symbol and celebration” of the long-standing support for the  LGBTQ+ community.
  • In 2017, Absolut launched a commercial in the form of a short film entitled “Equal Love” which became a metaphor for love without discrimination. The commercial became a hit and has amassed 2.9 million views on YouTube. 
  • Absolut has consistently produced commercials and billboard campaigns featuring gay, lesbian and transgender people. It supported the creation of “Roxanne”, a short film by Paul Frankl, about expressing the life of a transgender woman.
  • Absolut has been a consistent sponsor of LGBTQ+ events, such as The Queer Lounge at Sundance, The Gay Games, etc. In addition, it has also been a sponsor of many LGBTQ+ film festivals. 

CSR Initiative

  • The company has also been working with LGBTQ+ rights organizations, such as Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) and Stonewall Charity.
  • The brand runs a campaign called Out & Open which, as per its website, is an initiative to assist LGBTQ bars to revive. The website has posted audio of real-life stories on how gay bars are important to them, narrated by members of the LGBTQ community. Every time someone listens to the story, the company pledges to donate $1 to support the National LGBTQ Chamber of Commerce (NGLCC) initiative to preserve LGBTQ bars.


Levi Strauss and Co, the iconic jeans manufacturer has been advocating LGBTQ+ rights for a long time.


Some of the recent occasions when Levi’s took a political stance in favor of LGBTQ+ rights are:

  • Levi Strauss and Co. signed a letter in 2018 condemning the proposal by the Trump Administration to narrow the definition of gender and coming out openly in support of the transgender community.
  • The company joined an amicus brief in support of the rights of transgender students in Adams v. School Board of St. John’s County, Florida. 
  • It publicly supported the Equality Act, which was reintroduced in the House of Representatives in 2019, by joining several other sponsors that urged the Senate to allow a vote on the legislation to make LGBTQ+ discrimination illegal.

Engagement and CSR Initiatives

  • The most popular feature of Levi’s with regard to the LGBTQ+ theme is its Pride Collection, which has become an annual affair since 2014. If you thought that it is another pinkwashing act, you are wrong because the entire profit generated from the pride collection is donated by Levi Strauss and Co. to Harvey Milk Foundation and Stonewall Community Foundation.
  • The company has its own homegrown fund called the Rapid Response Fund which has supported the Transgender Law Center, a trans-led organization advocating against discriminatory legislation. Levi’s has also extended grants to Project One America to promote LGBTQ+ equality in the states of Texas, Alabama, Arkansas and Mississippi.

Internal Policies

  • In 1992, Levi Strauss and Co. became the first Fortune 500 company to allow health benefits to partners of the same-sex.
  • Levi Strauss and Co. has been securing a perfect score on the HRC’s Corporate Equality Index for the past 19 years in a row which is indeed an achievement.

Salesforce, Inc.

Salesforce is the No. 1 CRM application provided as per IDC 2022 Revenue Market Share Worldwide. The company is known for its activism for social causes, one of the most prominent being LGBTQ+ rights. 

Internal Policies

  • Salesforce announced gender-inclusive benefits that offer financial and emotional support to non-binary and transgender employees. The support includes:
  1. Reimbursement for gender reaffirmation procedures
  2. Four weeks’ of paid leave for post-procedure recovery
  3. Reimbursement of Legal Fee to get government IDs updated post gender reaffirmation
  4. Reimbursement for change of wardrobe after gender reaffirmation 
  5. Counseling services
  • The company prominently lists Equality as one of its values and aims to have “40% of employees globally to be women-identifying and non-binary by the end of 2026” as per the company website.
  • The company publishes annual Equality Reports which collects and reports data on various aspects concerning equality and inclusion, including self-identification among LGBTQ+ employees. 


  • The company announced in 2015 that it would cancel its plans for expansion in the State of Indiana after the passing of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, that allowed refusal of service to LGBT people based on religious beliefs. 
  • Activism from the company’s founder and CEO Marc Benioff, supported by a few others including Apple CEO Tim Cook, led to a revised, softened version of the law that made it illegal to deny services to individuals based on their sexual orientation or gender identity.
  • In the year 2016, Salesforce informed that the company would reduce its investments in the State of Georgia in protest of a bill that would allow denial of services by corporations to same-sex couples. The result was that the bill was vetoed by the then Governor Nathan Deal.

Starbucks Corporation

Internal Policies

  • Starbucks is well-known for its commitment to LGBTQ+ inclusion. The company started providing full health coverage to same-sex partners as early as 1988.
  • Starbucks is one of the few companies that provides coverage to transgender employees for gender reassignment surgery, including cosmetic procedures like breast augmentation or reduction, hair transplant, etc.
  • In the year 2014, Starbucks boldly hoisted the Pride Flag on top of its Headquarters in Seattle as a mark of its public position on inclusion. 


  • The company supported marriage equality and even filed an amicus brief in the Supreme Court challenging the Defense of Marriage Act.
  • The company has worked with LGBTQ+ advocacy groups in Brazil for inclusion efforts and provides legal support to transgender employees to get their names and genders updated on their government documents. 


  • Starbucks has a Pride Partner Alliance Network, originally established in 1996 by the LGBTQ+ employees meeting in Seattle area bars. The network attempts to create an equitable, and supportive environment for LGBTQ+ stakeholders free from discrimination on the basis of gender identity and sexual orientation.
  • When the Seattle Police Department designed and rolled out the Safe Place Program to identify safe and secure places for victims of hate-crime against LGBTQ+ individuals, Starbucks welcomed the concept and around 100 company-owned stores were enlisted as Safe Places. 

CSR Initiative

  • Starbucks donates regularly to NGOs supporting LGBTQ+ community through the Starbucks Foundation and the overall grant has been increasing over the years. Notably, during the Covid-19 pandemic the company donated to the Human Rights Campaign and the National Center for Transgender Equality for their initiatives to support the LGBTQ+ community during the pandemic.

What do you think about the above 5 brands that support LGBTQ community beyond Pride Month? We’d love to hear from you.

Also read our article “Is gender variance and homosexuality against nature”.

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