Should a secular company have the right to probe into the private lives of their employees? JP Morgan Chase Bank thinks so.
Employees of the international banking giant reported that they were given surveys to fill out that asked about their sexual orientation and if they were ‘an ally of the LGBT community.’ The survey was an employee opinion survey that also contained questions on management and a number of other issues.
According to at least one employee, they were asked to check all boxes that applied to them on the following question:
1) A person with disabilities;
2) A person with children with disabilities;
3) A person with a spouse/domestic partner with disabilities;
4) A member of the LGBT community.
5) An ally of the LGBT community, but not personally identifying as LGBT.”
According to JP Morgan Chase Spokeswoman Jaclyn D’Aversa the surveys were supposed to be voluntary and anonymous.
Princeton law professor Robert George was contacted by a Chase employee who remains anonymous for fear of losing his/her job. The employee told George:
“Not selecting that option is essentially saying ‘I’m not an ally of civil rights,’ which is a vague way to say ‘I’m a bigot.’ The worry among many of us is that those who didn’t select that poorly placed, irrelevant option will be placed on the ‘you can fire these people first’ list.”
“This survey was not anonymous. You had to enter your employee ID.”
Another Chase employee said:
“When your company is asking you if you are an ally of this community, it’s not like they are asking you if you like the Cleveland Browns. It makes you wonder what could happen. They are asking this for some reason. It will compel someone to do something. I am afraid I could lose my job or have it used to stack the deck against me.”
As a response to the not so anonymous and intrusive survey, a boycott has been launched against JP Morgan Chase banks along with a petition demanding a formal apology from JP Morgan Chase executives. The protest and petition reads in part:
“We are urging people across the globe to ‘Void Chase’, boycotting the mega-bank because of its highly invasive and inappropriate internal survey that asked employees if they were ‘allies of the LGBT community.’”
“In addition to administering this troublesome survey in the first place, Chase has lied to consumers and employees in the wake of public outcry, denying allegations of impropriety despite clear evidence that employees’ ID numbers were required as part of the survey.”…
“The mega-bank has refused to answer for this survey, or to apologize and reassure its employees and consumers. This is a major violation of trust, the central value in any banking relationship.”
“So, we’re calling on Chase customers worldwide to join the ‘Void Chase’ campaign. We are demanding that the bank issue a formal apology for their offensive conduct and pledge never again to invade the privacy of their employees by attempting to learn their private views about LGBT issues, and—until they do so—pledge to take your banking business elsewhere.”
What would you do if you were given a survey by your employer that was supposed to be anonymous, ask private questions and then insist on having your employee ID number on the survey? Would you trust them?
One of my former employers handed out a multiple page survey to everyone and said it was anonymous. The survey asked poignant questions about management and what we thought about many facets of the company. We did not have to put our names or any ID on the survey, but in an office about 60 people, they quickly identified many of us from our handwriting. Some employees that responded with harsh criticism of management were singled out and several were soon looking for other jobs, so I can understand how the employees at JP Morgan Chase banks feel about their survey.
If you do any business with JP Morgan Chase banks, you may want to consider the possibility of moving your accounts or business to another bank. In my own case, I found a very reputable and Christian owned local bank with nearly 10 offices in the area. They are very personable, friendly and run their bank ethically. Perhaps there is a similar local bank chain in your area. I suggest looking into it. I for one have not and will not do business with JP Morgan Chase and urge others to do likewise.