Corprate Bias Ratings
CVS Health (CVS) fired a Catholic nurse who refused to administer what she believed were life-ending drugs only months after ending its longstanding religious exemptions. Despite this ongoing wrongful termination lawsuit, CVS has applied for FDA approval to dispense the abortion drug mifepristone at its pharmacies. The company provides travel benefits for abortion, pushes for the use of abortion-inducing drugs across the country, and covers the cost of "medically necessary transition-related care” for its employees and their children. The company is a member of the Global Alliance for Responsible Media and a gold partner of the Human Rights Campaign (HRC). CVS advocates for the Equality Act and supports transgender athletes playing in female sports. CVS funds multiple LGBTQ advocacy organizations and pledges to vet vendors for LGBTQ policies. CVS is a signatory of the Business Roundtable's 2019 Statement on the Purpose of Corporation, which promotes stakeholder capitalism. The company is committed to carbon neutrality by 2040. For these reasons, CVS Health 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.
CVS Health fired a Catholic nurse practitioner after she refused to prescribe or administer abortifacients, citing her religious beliefs (1). The nurse had worked with CVS for multiple years without qualms until CVS changed its religious exemption rules in 2022 and tried to force the nurse to prescribe life-ending drugs that go against her religious beliefs (2). The former employee is suing CVS for religious discrimination in an ongoing lawsuit. A similar lawsuit was filed in 2023 (3). CVS is a member of the Global Alliance for Responsible Media, which aims to demonetize advertisements and suppress content that “vilifies” individuals based on sexual orientation and gender identity, discusses “debated social issues in a negative or partisan context” or spreads “hate speech” (4)(5)(6). The company received a score of 100 on the Corporate Equality Index from the HRC. Among other requirements, this means the company has pledged to vet vendors based on LGBTQ policies (7). CVS has applied for FDA approval to dispense abortion drugs (8). At one CVS location, the pharmacists distributed abortion drugs instead of fertility drugs to a young woman who was trying to get pregnant (9).
Charitable giving (including employee matching programs) policies or practices discriminate against charitable organizations based on views or religious beliefs.
Donations stay within the health sector, benefitting a wide range of charities across the US. They encourage matching grants for volunteer hours rather than employee donations and do not discriminate against religious groups. CVS Health established a Faith-Based Partnerships group in 2020 to collaborate for health purposes (1).
Uses corporate reputation to support ideological causes and/or organizations hostile to freedom of expression.
CVS Health advocates for the Equality Act and transgender participation in girls’ sports (1)(2). Furthermore, CVS has committed to multiple acts of engagement for the LGBTQ community (3). Whistleblowers allege that CVS has mandatory “antiracism” training programs featuring core tenets of critical race theory (4)(5)(6). The company signed an open letter opposing a Florida bill that would prevent teaching gender identity and sexual orientation in schools to kids in K-3rd grade (7). CVS published a “Gender Transition” guide for employees to follow, including using the bathroom, pronouns, and name of their choice, even offering time off for procedures, while encouraging other employees not to make assumptions about gender (8). CEO Karen Lynch is a member of the Business Roundtable and Former CEO Larry Merlo signed its 2019 Statement on the Purpose of Corporation, which promotes stakeholder capitalism over traditional obligations to shareholders and customers (9)(10). CVS Health is a Ceres Network Member, committed to net zero carbon emissions by 2040 (11)(12). CVS Health CEO Larry J. Merlo is a signatory of the CEO Action for Diversity and Inclusion pledge (13).
Uses corporate funds to advance ideological causes, organizations, or policies hostile to freedom of expression.
CVS Health 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). CVS also provides abortion travel benefits for its employees (3). CVS continues to support abortion through its abortion-inducing drugs that it sells for profit (4). CVS Health is is a member of the Global Alliance for Responsible Media and a gold partner of the HRC (5)(6)(7)(8). CVS gives to a variety of health-centered charities free from ideological prejudice (9). CVS committed $600 million to the Black Lives Matter movement and related causes; some of the funds went to non-ideological causes such as career development and education, though part of the sum went to “social justice organizations,” which the statement does not specify (10)(11). CVS is a copper sponsor of Out & Equal and a corporate partner of the National LGBT Chamber of Commerce (12)(13).
All links were last accessed and all information was updated on:
December 5, 2023
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|Date||ESG Category||Proponent||Summary of Resolution||Mgmt Rec||Total Vote % in Favor|
|5/18/23||Governance||John Chevedden||Give the Owners of 10% of Common Stock the Power to Call a Special Shareholder Meeting||Against||40.80%|
|5/18/23||Social||New York State Common Retirement Fund||Assess/Report on Adherence to ILO/UN Trade Union Standards||Against||26.30%|
|5/18/23||Governance||Trillium Asset Management||Adopt Paid Sick Leave Policy||Against||26.20%|
|5/18/23||Governance||Myra K. Young||Require Stockholder Approval for Certain By-law Amendements||Against||18.50%|
|5/18/23||Governance||National Center for Public Policy Research||Require a CVS-Exclusive Board of Directors||Against||1.30%|
|4/28/23||Social||NorthStar Asset Management, Inc.||Report on Hiring Practices Impact on Diversity||Against||17.50%|
|4/25/23||Governance||James McRitchie and Myra K. Young||Report on Election Spending||Against||15.60%|
|5/11/22||Governance||John Chevedden||Special Meetings - Reduce Ownership Req. to 10%||Against||42.30%|
|5/11/22||Social||Trillium Asset Management||Adopt Policy for Paid Sick Leave for All Employees||Against||25.89%|
|5/11/22||Governance||Kenneth Steiner||Independent Board Chair||Against||21.34%|
|5/11/22||Social||Myra K. Young||Report on External Public Health Costs of Junk Food Sales and Impact on Diversified Shareholders||Against||11.82%|
|5/11/22||Social||National Center for Public Policy Research||Civil Rights and Non-Discrimination Audit||Against||1.60%|