Publix

Florida
Food and Staples Retailing

Corprate Bias Ratings

Risk Level:

Rating - Clear
Lower Risk

In 2021, Publix, an American supermarket chain, settled a lawsuit with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) after it did not accommodate an employee's request to wear dreadlocks, and he chose to quit before his first day. Publix has since amended its grooming policy to allow for religious exemptions, though the company never admitted wrongdoing in the suit. Otherwise, Publix has not publicly terminated business relationships based on views or beliefs. The company does not provide viewpoint protections for its employees. Publix has pledged $1 million to BLM and related causes. However, it has not used its corporate reputation or political contributions for ideological purposes. For these reasons, Publix receives a Lower Risk rating.

Criteria
Risk Level
Rationale
Corporate Weaponization
Criteria

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.

Risk Level
Rationale

In 2021, Publix settled a lawsuit for requiring an employee to change his dreadlocks hairstyle to meet their grooming requirements (1). The suit was filed by the EEOC in 2017 for violating the employee’s right to a religious exemption or accommodation for Rastafarianism. As part of the suit, Publix must administer training on its nondiscrimination and religious accommodation policy to all human resource employees, managers, and supervisors at the Nashville store where the incident occurred. Publix has relaxed its grooming standards since 2017 when the lawsuit was first filed. Otherwise, Publix has not publicly fired customers, suppliers, or vendors based on political views or religious beliefs.

Criteria

Charitable giving (including employee matching programs) policies or practices discriminate against charitable organizations based on views or religious beliefs.

Risk Level
Rationale

Publix does not appear to discriminate against religious organizations in its charitable giving (1)(2).

Criteria

Employment policies fail to protect against discrimination based on political affiliation/views and/or religion.

Risk Level
Rationale

Publix does not provide viewpoint protections for its employees (1).

Corporate Governance and Public Policy
Criteria

Uses corporate reputation to support ideological causes and/or organizations hostile to freedom of expression.

Risk Level
Rationale

Publix has not supported ideological causes or policies (1).

Criteria

Uses corporate funds to advance ideological causes, organizations, or policies hostile to freedom of expression.

Risk Level
Rationale

Publix has pledged $1 million to the Black Lives Matter movement and related causes, including the National Urban League (1)(2).

Criteria

Uses corporate political contributions for ideological, non-business purposes.

Risk Level
Rationale

Publix has not used its political contributions for ideological purposes (1)(2)(3).

All links were last accessed and all information was updated on:
November 21, 2023

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