Corprate Bias Ratings
Apple has canceled apps for their political views or other ideological reasons. Apple terminated an employee who sued the company for political discrimination. The company has engaged in censorship activity in China and Taiwan and has been accused of colluding with the Chinese Communist Party. Apple discriminates against religious nonprofits in its charitable giving and does not protect its employees against viewpoint discrimination. The company leverages its corporate reputation and funds to support and solicit support for groups hostile to freedom of expression, like the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC). Tim Cook, the CEO, has referred to religious freedom legislation as "pro-discrimination" and is a signatory of the Business Roundtable's 2019 Statement on the Purpose of Corporation, which promotes stakeholder capitalism. Apple has pledged $100 million to BLM and related causes and its medical benefits cover travel costs for employee abortions. The company covers the cost of "medically necessary transition-related care” for its employees and their children. Apple is committed to carbon neutrality by 2030. For these reasons, Apple receives a High Risk rating.
Has denied service to customers, suppliers, or vendors due to their political views or religious beliefs OR corporately boycotts, divests, or sanctions regions, people groups, or industries.
Apple removed Parler from its app store for “failing to effectively police content” (1). It did the same for Gab, even though Gab appealed the suspension, pointing out that many other approved social networks contained identical content that Apple did not scrutinize (2). Apple has also enabled censorship in other countries, including China and Taiwan (3)(4). Apple received a score of 100 on the Corporate Equality Index from the Human Rights Campaign (HRC). Among other requirements, this means the company has pledged to vet vendors based on LGBTQ policies (4). Apple has also banned Fortnite, Metadata+, Trapster, and many other apps (5). According to various reports, including from Apple itself, the company blocks millions of apps each year; some of these banned apps are available on other platforms, such as Google Play (6). Some of these banned apps have accused Apple of banning them for political or other reasons (7). After Elon Musk became CEO of Twitter, Apple allegedly threatened to pull Twitter from its App Store (8). However, Apple CEO Tim Cook has claimed that the company “never considered removing the platform” and attributed the issue to a “misunderstanding” (9).
Charitable giving (including employee matching programs) policies or practices discriminate against charitable organizations based on views or religious beliefs.
Uses corporate reputation to support ideological causes and/or organizations hostile to freedom of expression.
Apple has a perfect score on the HRC’s 2022 Corporate Equality Index. This score indicates the company covers the cost of “medically necessary transition-related care” for its employees and their children (1)(2). Apple used iTunes to solicit donations for the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) (3). Apple CEO Tim Cook wrote a Washington Post op-ed referring to religious freedom legislation as “pro-discrimination” (4). Apple also advocates for the Equality Act and transgender participation in girls’ and women’s sports (5)(6). Apple voiced opposition to various state legislatures’ efforts to secure their voting systems as well as the 2015 NC “Bathroom Bill” that required people to use the restroom corresponding to their biological sex (7)(8). Apple opposed the Florida Parental Rights in Education Act, which prohibits teaching gender identity and sexual orientation in schools to kids in K-3rd grade (9). The company is a Ceres Network Member, committed to net zero carbon emissions by 2040 (10)(11). Apple has implemented ESG requirements into its business practices, including mandatory unconscious bias training and a 2030 carbon neutrality pledge (12). Apple CEO Tim Cook is a member of the Business Roundtable and signed its 2019 Statement on the Purpose of Corporation, which promotes stakeholder capitalism over traditional obligations to shareholders and customers (13)(14).
Uses corporate funds to advance ideological causes, organizations, or policies hostile to freedom of expression.
Apple has given $1 million to the SPLC and is a Platinum Sponsor of the HRC (1)(2). Overall, Apple has pledged $100 million to the Black Lives Matter movement and related causes (3)(4). Apple’s medical benefits cover abortion-related travel costs for employees (5). Apple is a Titanium sponsor of Out and Equal and is a corporate partner of the National LGBT Chamber of Commerce (6)(7). Apple has a perfect score on the HRC’s 2022 Corporate Equality Index. This score indicates the company covers the cost of “medically necessary transition-related care” for its employees and their children (8)(9).
All links were last accessed and all information was updated on:
November 28, 2023
Company reports are intended for educational use only. Full Disclaimer
|Date||ESG Category||Proponent||Summary of Resolution||Mgmt Rec||Total Vote % in Favor|
|5/25/23||Governance||Kenneth Steiner||Special Meetings - Reduce Ownership Req. to 10%||Against||50.50%|
|5/25/23||Environmental||Handerly Hotels, Inc.||Report on the Company's Plans to Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions||Against||29.80%|
|3/10/23||Social||Arjuna Capital||Report on Gender/Racial Pay Disparity||Against||33.80%|
|3/10/23||Governance||James McRitchie||Adopt Shareholder Proxy Access Amendements||Against||31.00%|
|3/10/23||Governance||Nia Impact Capital||Adopt a New Policy on Voting Shares||Against||6.50%|
|3/10/23||Social||National Legal and Policy Center||Report on Ties to Communist China||Against||4.40%|
|3/10/23||Social||National Center for Public Policy Research||Civil Rights and Non-Discrimination Audit||Against||1.40%|
|5/19/22||Governance||Kenneth Steiner||Special Meetings - Reduce Ownership Req. to 10%||Against||41.42%|
|3/4/22||Social||SOC Investment Group||Report on Civil Rights Audit||Against||53.55%|
|3/4/22||Social||Nia Impact Capital||Report on Company Risks Through Use of Concealment Clauses||Against||50.04%|
|3/4/22||Social||SumOfUs||Report on Supply Chain Forced Labor||Against||33.72%|
|3/4/22||Social||Arjuna Capital||Report on Median Racial & Gender Pay Gaps||Against||33.65%|
|3/4/22||Social||Azzad Asset Mgmt.||Revise Transparency Reports to Include App Removals by Government Requests||Against||31.73%|
|3/4/22||Governance||N/A - Undisclosed||Reincorporate to Become a Social Purpose Corporation||Against||3.10%|
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