Exxon Mobil adds sexual orientation and gender identity to its anti-discrimination policy

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IRVING, Texas — Exxon Mobil Corp. has updated its corporate policies to protect employees from discrimination for sexual orientation or gender identity.

Spokesman Alan Jeffers said Friday that the Irving, Texas-based oil giant added these protections to comply with federal law.

In July, President Barack Obama signed an executive order that expanded protections for gay and transgender employees of federal contractors.

Exxon Mobil, which has federal contracts worth millions of dollars, had said it would comply with the order but wouldn't say if it would formalize that with revised corporate policies.

The company had maintained that its stated zero-tolerance standards ensured protections without having to specify them.

Deena Fidas of the Human Rights Campaign called the update a "calibrated response" to maintain Exxon's federal contracts.

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