On this years International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia, global apparel retailer Gap Inc. and the United Nations Foundation announced that they will once again partner during Pride Month in June to raise awareness and funds for UN Free & Equal, a global campaign of the United Nations Human Rights Office to promote equal rights and fair treatment for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex (LGBTI) people globally. This year marks the fourth consecutive year of the partnership, which has so far raised nearly $300,000 for UN Free & Equal.
The 2019 partnership comes at the 50-year mark of the 1969 Stonewall Riots, a pivotal moment in the movement for LGBTI equality, as well as Gap Inc.’s 50th anniversary of the first Gap store opening in San Francisco.
“We’re proud to recognize the important progress made by LGBTI people and allies, and to build on our partnership with the UN. We will continue to work for a world where LGBTI people and their families can live free from discrimination because we know that, despite historic gains, the fight for full equality is far from over,” said Art Peck, President and CEO of Gap Inc.
Proceeds from the sale of the following Gap Inc. products will go to the United Nations Foundation in support of the UN Free & Equal campaign:
- Gap will donate 15 percent of sales while supplies last up to $100,000 from its limited-edition Pride collection available May 26 – July 6, which includes adult and children’s apparel and accessories, as well as baby clothing for the first time.
- Banana Republic will donate 50 percent of the ticket price, up to $60,000, from the sale of items from May 21 – July 22 in its limited-edition Pride Collection, which includes apparel and accessories for adults, as well as children’s graphic t-shirts for the first time.
- Athleta is contributing a cash donation of $10,000.
- Gap Inc. brands will offer special Pride-themed eGift Cards from Old Navy, Gap, Gap Factory, Banana Republic, Banana Republic Factory, Athleta, and Hill City. For every Pride eGift Card sold between May 29 – July 7, $2 will be donated to the UN Foundation in support of the UN Free & Equal campaign, up to $10,000.
The UN Free & Equal campaign is a powerful tool in the fight for equality. The global campaign aims to win respect, recognition, and acceptance for the human rights of lesbian, gay, bi, trans, and intersex people around the world. The campaign targets parents, students, teachers, journalists, and policymakers, especially in countries where LGBTI communities face hostility and hardship and aims to cultivate new allies in the fight for equality. It has campaigned in some 35 countries, so far, with more than a dozen active full-scale national campaigns currently.
“We are all born free and equal in dignity and rights – no matter who we are or whom we love. The UN Free & Equal Campaign is our call to action, asking everyone to stand up for the human rights of LGBTI people,” said Veronica Birga, Chief of the Women’s Human Rights and Gender Section at the UN Human Rights Office. “Gap Inc.’s support makes it possible for UN Free & Equal to raise public awareness, mobilize for political change and contribute to a positive change in attitudes, in collaboration with activists, community members and allies around the world.”
“It’s time for LGBTI human rights to become a reality everywhere,” said Kathy Calvin, President & CEO of the UN Foundation. “The UN Foundation is honored to partner with Gap Inc. to support the Free & Equal campaign. Together, we can support the UN’s work to mobilize a movement that rejects discrimination and stands in unwavering support of equality, progress, and human rights for all.”
Despite gains made in many parts of the world, the global fight for LGBTI human rights remains at a critical stage as more than 70 countries still criminalize same-sex relationships. Since Gap Inc.’s founding in 1969, it has led its business by celebrating individuality and diversity, and by treating all people equally—with respect, dignity and fairness. In 2017, Gap Inc. was the first apparel company to sign on to a new set of global standards for business on respecting and promoting the human rights of LGBTI people. The company, which recently received a perfect score on the Human Rights Campaign 2019 Corporate Equality Index (CEI) for the fourteenth consecutive year, has also been an advocate for the passage of the Equality Act in the U.S.
Once again, this year, Gap Inc. employees will celebrate Pride in stores and communities around the world. Employees of Gap Inc., the UN Foundation, and UN Free & Equal will also participate in local Pride parades.