The Human Rights Campaign suspended Google from the 2019 Corporate Equality Index after the tech conglomerate did not remove a conversion therapy app.
When putting together this year’s annual Corporate Equality Index, HRC noted in a footnote on the report that it became aware of an app, from Living Hope Ministries, distributed in Google’s Play Store that “supports the practice of so-called ‘conversion therapy’.”
“Sometimes known as ‘reparative therapy,’ so-called ‘conversion therapy’ includes a range of dangerous and discredited practices that falsely claim to change a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity or expression,” the report notes. “Pending remedial steps by the company to address this app that can cause harm to the LGBTQ community, the CEI rating is suspended.”
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A Change.org petition has called for the removal of this app, and it currently has over 140,000 signatures. Apple, Amazon, and Microsoft have all removed it from their platforms.
Google has scored highly on the Corporate Equality Index in prior years, receiving a score of 100 percent in 2018. The company has taken certain LGBTQ-friendly measures in the past, such as adding pay to cover a tax for same-sex benefits in 2010 or giving a $1 million grant to the LGBT Community Center in New York City in 2017 in honor of the 1969 Stonewall Uprising.
Google declined to comment on this specific matter. HRC did not respond to a request for comment.
Follow USA TODAY intern Ben Tobin on Twitter: @TobinBen