Target Transgender Policy Causes Retail Chain to Take Major Financial Hit

Amanda Casanova | Contributor | Monday, April 10, 2017

Target Transgender Policy Causes Retail Chain to Take Major Financial Hit

Target’s 2016 blog post about a policy regarding transgender customers started a boycott that has cost the company millions, and it was a post that wasn’t even approved by Target CEO Brian Cornell.

The post, which was published in April 2016, detailed Target’s policy that says transgender customers were welcome to use the bathroom or fitting room that matched their gender identity.

"Everyone deserves to feel like they belong," the post said. "And you'll always be accepted, respected and welcomed at Target."

But Cornell told The Wall Street Journal he never approved the post and found out about it after it went live. He said, however, he supports the policy.

"We took a stance, and we are going to continue to embrace our belief of diversity and inclusion," Cornell said in an interview with CNBC in May.

The post triggered a boycott, and the company has since had to spend $20 million to install single-occupancy bathrooms in stores for critics of the policy. Opponents of the policy say that it could allow sexual predators to take advantage of the law and victimize women and children.

Sales slipped nearly six percent in the three quarters after the post was published compared with the same period last year, and same-store sales have fallen every quarter since the post.


Photo courtesy: Wikimedia Commons

Publication date: April 10, 2017