NEWS
11/06/2019 7:47 AM IST

Over 180 CEOs Sign Full-Page NYT Ad That Declares Abortion Bans Are 'Bad For Business'

Twitter's Jack Dorsey, fashion designer Diane Von Furstenburg and more signed the ad that declares equality in the workplace is "one of the most important business issues of our time."

Nearly 200 CEOs signed a full-page New York Times ad published Monday that urges companies to stand up for reproductive rights in the face of ongoing abortion bans in states across the U.S.

“Equality in the workplace is one of the most important business issues of our time. When everyone is empowered to succeed, our companies, our communities, and our economy are better for it,” the statement reads. (Scroll below to read the statement in full.) 

The ad, which leads with the phrase “Don’t ban equality,” is signed by 187 executives including Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey, fashion designer Diane Von Furstenberg, Glossier founder Emily Weiss and Ben & Jerry’s CEO Matthew McCarthy. The companies represent 108,000 workers across the country. 

“Restricting access to comprehensive reproductive care, including abortion, threatens the health, independence and economic stability of our employees and customers,” the ad states.

“Simply put, it goes against our values and is bad for business,” the ad continues. “It impairs our ability to build diverse and inclusive workforce pipelines, recruit top talent across the states, and protect the well-being of all the people who keep our businesses thriving day in and out.”

Several states have recently passed abortion bans or restrictions that have shocked many across the country. States including Alabama, Georgia, Ohio and Missouri have all banned abortion as early as the first trimester.

Alabama passed the most extreme of the new laws last month, banning all abortions from the time a person is “known to be pregnant” and providing no exceptions for rape or incest. Georgia passed a “heartbeat bill” last month, which bans abortion at around six weeks ― a time when most women do not know they’re pregnant. 

The “Don’t Ban Equality” website also went live on Monday morning and directs readers to more information about the anti-abortion restrictions. Additionally, more executives are able to sign the letter on the website. 

The ad was spearheaded by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, NARAL Pro-Choice America and the Center for Reproductive Rights. 

“The ACLU is proud to stand with these business leaders who are saying loudly and clearly — access to reproductive health care, including abortion, is essential for their employees’ equality in the workplace and their lives,” Anthony D. Romero, executive director of the ACLU, said in a press release Monday morning. “Their statement today shows that the business community won’t sit on the sidelines while politicians continue to try to take away our reproductive rights.”

Planned Parenthood recently declared a state of emergency amid the sweeping anti-abortion restrictions implemented in several states across the country. Just last week, the United Nations commissioner of human rights said the U.S. is in “crisis” and likened the recent abortion laws to “torture.”

Several film and TV companies, including Netflix and Walt Disney, have said they plan to boycott certain states that have recently enacted extreme anti-abortion legislation. Additionally, entertainment stars like Sophie Turner, Jessica Chastain, Laverne Cox and Ashley Judd have all vowed not to work in states with abortion bans. 

Read the full “Don’t Ban Equality” ad below.