September 5, 2012
By Jacob Combs
Another day, another company in favor of equality for gays and lesbians: Expedia, the web’s largest online travel company, announced yesterday that it supports marriage equality in Washington state. With headquarters in Bellevue, Washington, Expedia, which runs Expedia.com, Hotels.com and Hotwire, has more than 2,200 employees in the state and almost 9,000 across the globe. In a statement announcing the decision, Dara Khosrowshahi, Expedia’s President and CEO, said the following:
“As the world’s largest online travel company — with operations in well over 30 countries — we know firsthand that the world is a diverse place. Much like our customers, clients, partners, and suppliers, our employees represent a multitude of locations, cultures and experiences. …
“We strive to actively promote equality in our workplace and are committed to treating one another with respect and dignity. … Today, we add our voice to the topic of marriage equality. We thoughtfully engage in this public discussion because it has significant impact on our employees, customers, and partners, all with whom we interact daily.
Supporting the legislation recently passed in Washington State — which provides same-sex couples with the same right to civil marriage that opposite sex couples already enjoy — is a natural extension of our ongoing commitment to the LGBT community.”
Expedia joins a wide array of Washingtonian businesses that have come out in support of equal marriage rights in Washington, among them Nike, Microsoft and Starbucks. Washington United for Marriage, which is campaigning for a marriage equality win this November, has also announced the support of 327 small businesses in the state as well as the endorsements of the 19 of the state’s labor unions.
The most recent poll on the issue showed 51 percent of Washington voters in support of marriage equality, with 42 percent opposed.