Apple CEO Tim Cook is among the
business leaders backing a petition campaign to ban discrimination
based on sexual orientation and gender identity in Michigan.
According to The Detroit News,
the group Fair and Equal Michigan on Tuesday launched the campaign.
To reach the November ballot for voters
to decide, the group must collect 340,047 valid petition signatures
by May 27.
Fair and Equal Michigan is a coalition
of business executives, activists, and non-profits. It includes
leaders from Dow, Consumer Energy, DTE Energy, and Apple.
"Discrimination runs contrary to
our most basic of American values," Cook,
who is gay, said in a statement. "By protecting every person
from discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender
identity, we can help make sure that every person is measured by
their talents and creativity and is treated with the dignity and
respect that is due to all."
The initiative seeks to ban LGBT
discrimination by expanding the Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act of
1976, which prohibits discrimination based on religion, race, age,
sex, and other attributes.
Last year, Democratic
Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed an executive order that
prohibits discrimination in state services or by state contractors
based on sexual orientation and gender identity.