Merck & Co.

Rahway, New Jersey
Health Care Equipment and Services

Corporate Bias Rating

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Risk Level:

Rating - Danger
High Risk


Merck & Co. scored a 100 out of 100 on the 2023-2024 Corporate Equality Index (CEI) from the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), a political stakeholder group. By complying with the HRC’s controversial demands, Merck increases the risk of dividing employees, alienating customers and harming shareholders. The company provides a benefits package for employees which covers transgender medical procedures for covered employees and dependents, including children. It also uses sex and gender ideology criteria in employee recruitment, vendor selection, marketing, and philanthropic support. Merck forces employees to undergo multiple ideological trainings and uses its reputation, corporate funds, and political influence to support controversial sex and gender ideologies, organizations, and legislation. Merck’s CEO and President signed Catalyst's Champions for Change pledge. The company is a signatory of the Gender & Diversity KPI Alliance, appearing to prioritize diversity over merit in its business structure through the establishment of gender and racial targets for its leadership composition and its support of DEI in its hiring and promotions. Merck is part of the Global Alliance for Responsible Media and does not provide viewpoint protections for its employees. The company indirectly funds Planned Parenthood and supports the Equality Act. Merck pledged $20 million to BLM and related causes. The company discriminates against religious organizations in its charitable giving and supports LGBTQ causes and organizations. Merck opposed various state and local legislation intended to protect parental rights, girls’ sports, bathroom facilities, and gendered spaces. The company is a bronze partner of PFLAG and a member of the MCCA, indicating its focus on recruiting, retaining, and promoting employees based on race. Merck is a Bronze sponsor of the HRC and has donated to the Equality PAC. For these reasons, Merck receives a High Risk rating.

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Board Bias

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CEO of Merck & Co.

Robert M. Davis

Robert M. Davis


Headquartered in Rahway, New Jersey, Merck & Co. is a member of the Fortune 250 operating in the Health Care Equipment and Services industry. Robert M. Davis and Robert M. Davis serve as CEO/President and Chairman, respectively, leading the company’s C-suite executive team and the board of directors. Amongst these teams, the collective leadership is responsible for $311,150 to Republican causes and $281,025 to Democratic causes. Under their tenure, Merck & Co. currently holds a 'High Risk' risk rating.

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Political Contributions of Leadership:





Shareholder Proposals

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ESG Category
Summary of ResolutionMgmt RecTotal Vote % in Favor
5/23/23GovernanceKenneth SteinerIndependent Board ChairmanAgainst27.80%
5/23/23SocialOxfam America, Inc.Access to COVID-19 ProductsAgainst26.40%
5/23/23SocialThe Province of Saint Joseph of the Capuchin OrderPatents and AccessAgainst23.80%
5/23/23GovernanceBoston Common Asset ManagementIndirect Political SpendingAgainst6.20%
5/23/23SocialNational Legal and Policy CenterBusiness Operations in ChinaAgainst3.20%
5/23/23SocialThe National Center for Public Policy ResearchCongruency Report of Partnerships with Globalist OrganizationsAgainst1.00%
5/24/22SocialOxfam America, Inc.Report on Access to COVID-19 ProductsAgainst35.97%
5/24/22GovernanceKenneth SteinerRequire Independent Board ChairAgainst34.50%
5/24/22SocialNational Legal and Policy CenterReport on Lobbying Payments and PolicyAgainst16.09%
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