NY pension fund motion on sexual orientation gets massive support at KBR

Strong support for a shareholder proposal opposed by management

A proposal tabled by the five New York City Pension Funds on sexual orientation and gender identity won 61.6% support at the shareholder meeting of US defence contractor KBR.
A similar proposal from the funds last year gained 48.7% support.
The proposal called for KBR to amend its equal employment opportunity policy to “explicitly prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity or expression”. The meeting took place on May 19 in Houston, Texas.
New York City Comptroller John Liu, trustee of the five New York funds, said: “A defence company should defend its employees from discrimination. The burden is now on KBR to respond to the demand of the majority of its investors.“KBR, spun out of Halliburton in 2007, provides support services to US troops in North America, Iraq, and Afghanistan. It said it provides employees “with a working environment free of discrimination, harassment, intimidation or coercion relating directly or indirectly to race, color, religion, disability, sex, age or national origin”. The New York funds have a combined holding worth $44.7m in KBR.
Meanwhile, the expected investor statement calling on Chevron to reassess its stance on the $18bn Ecuador litigation has been released. Some 15 institutional investors with a combined $156bn want the oil company to disclose to shareholders the risks to its operations and business from the potential enforcement of the verdict.
“It’s time for Chevron to face reality,” said New York State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli, trustee of the $140.6bn New York State Common Retirement Fund, which owns 7.5m Chevron shares worth an estimated $780m.

For a look at the NYC pension funds, the US’s most active shareholder resolution filers, please take a look at this RI Interview