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December 04, 2014

Amazon Includes Anti-Gay-Marriage Groups in Giving Program

Amazon, a company rated highly by gay-rights organizations for its corporate anti-discrimination policies, is drawing fire from some of the same activists because its AmazonSmile charity program allows customers to support groups that oppose marriage equality, writes The Seattle Times.

Launched last year, AmazonSmile lets shoppers direct 0.5 percent of their spending to a chosen charity. Among the more than 1 million eligible nonprofits are the National Organization for Marriage Education Fund and Focus on the Family, which have fought same-sex marriage. "There is clearly a conflict between Amazon's values and the program," said Seth Adam, a spokesman for LGBT rights group GLAAD.

Amazon says it uses the Southern Poverty Law Center's register of hate groups to weed out nonprofits that discriminate but otherwise aims to give consumers the widest possible choice of charity beneficiaries. "We've structured it to put customers in control, and we feel good about that decision," said Ian McAllister, general manager of AmazonSmile.