Delta Airlines is the latest organization to drop out of an event honoring Brazil’s homophobic president, Jair Bolsonaro. The question that now remains is whether other companies will do the same.
On 14 May, Bolsonaro is set to receive the Brazilian-American Chamber of Commerce’s Person of the Year Award. The Marriott Marquis in Manhattan is hosting.
The American Museum of Natural History had been set to host the gala before dropping out.
Delta did not provide any comment beyond confirming the decision to CNBC. Another group, Bain & Company, a consulting firm, also announced they would no longer be involved, saying that ‘encouraging and celebrating diversity is a core Bain principle’.
CNBC also listed the Financial Times as another organization that pulled out.
Several other businesses are still listed as sponsors of the event. These include: Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Bank of New York Mellon, BNP Paribas, Citigroup, Forbes, HSBC, JPMorgan, UBS, Credit Suisse and Morgan Stanley.
Marriott has a history of supporting LGBTI rights, from pledging to support the transgender community and endorsing the Equality Act to receiving an honor from the National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce.
Arne Sorenson, CEO Marriott International, also stood against North Carolina’s HB 2.
The company defended hosting the event by saying they are ‘required by law to accept business even if it conflicts with our values’. The statement added that ‘acceptance of business does not indicate support, or endorsement’.
Leading with hateful ideology
He’s previously said he would be ‘incapable’ of loving an LGBTI child and that if parents see their son ‘acting a little bit gay’ they should beat him ‘to make him normal’.
On his first day in office, he stripped LGBTI issues from the new human rights ministry in Brazil.
Update 1 May, 3:11 pm PST: Marriott CEO Arne Sorenson published a blog post about the company’s ‘welcome to all’ policy, including ‘those with whom we might have fundamental disagreements, even individuals whose views we may consider to be intolerant and non-inclusive’.