Press Releases

Tuesday, January 21, 2020

Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield West Virginia awarded “Best Place to Work for LGBTQ Equality” from the Human Rights Campaign Foundation

PARKERSBURG, W.Va. (Jan. 21, 2020) — Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield West Virginia strives to be a workplace where all employees can bring their whole selves to work and to know that they are appreciated and welcome as unique individuals. In recognition of Highmark West Virginia's supportive and inclusive culture for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer or questioning employees, the company has earned distinction as a "Best Place to Work for LGBTQ Equality" from the Human Rights Campaign Foundation.

Highmark West Virginia qualified for the award for the first time this year and received the top score of 100 points. Highmark West Virginia is one of only two organizations in West Virginia to make the list and receive the award. The 2020 national Corporate Equality Index benchmarks corporate policies and practices pertinent to LGBTQ employees, helping businesses to compare themselves to those that are leaders in diversity and inclusion.

"It's an honor to be recognized by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation for the work we do around creating an inclusive workplace," said Jim Fawcett, president, Highmark West Virginia. "We are committed to having a culture where all team members feel safe, valued and encouraged to contribute their best thinking, and we will continue to find ways to promote inclusion and diversity as a way to help our team members grow and succeed."

This year, three Highmark Health companies have received perfect scores, with Highmark West Virginia and Highmark Delaware making the list for the first time, joining Highmark Inc., which has earned the designation since 2017.

"Highmark Inc. strives to honor its many diverse employees and customers by being an inclusive, respectful and safe place to work and do business," said Dr. Lonie Haynes, vice president of diversity and inclusion for Highmark Health. "We are proud that Highmark West Virginia and Highmark Delaware are joining Highmark Inc. in being recognized as leaders within the LGBTQ communities they serve."

Among the practices that earned Highmark West Virginia the "Best Place to Work" designation are equivalent spousal and domestic partner benefits related to health, dental and vision coverage, and legal dependent coverage; transgender-inclusive benefits and workplace transition guidelines, yearly collaboration with human resources to educate leaders and the workforce about understanding the LGBTQ community; sponsorship of community activities that engage and include LGBTQ employees and that continue to build community partnerships; and involvement with the corporate LGBTQ business resource group (BRG), which acts as a vital resource and partner to our business, enhancing our capabilities and knowledge in workforce inclusivity and marketplace excellence, and helping us to connect with the communities we serve.

The full report is available online at www.hrc.org/cei.

ABOUT HIGHMARK BLUE CROSS BLUE SHIELD WEST VIRGINIA

Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield West Virginia serves approximately 325,000 members through the company's health care benefits business and hundreds of thousands of additional members through the BlueCard® program. Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield of West Virginia holds the largest share of the commercial market, and more West Virginians carry a Blue Cross Blue Shield card than any other insurance carrier in the state. With offices in Parkersburg, Charleston and Wheeling, Highmark West Virginia employs more than 700 people and serves as a key economic driver in the state with its total economic impact reaching $262 million. Highmark West Virginia is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. For more information, visit www.highmark.com

ABOUT THE HUMAN RIGHTS CAMPAIGN FOUNDATION

The Human Rights Campaign Foundation is the educational arm of America's largest civil rights organization working to achieve equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual transgender and queer people. HRC envisions a world where LGBTQ people are embraced as full members of society at home, at work and in every community. www.hrc.org

For more information, contact:
Cathy McAlister
Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield West Virginia
304-347-7754
cathy.mcalister@highmarkhealth.org