Skip to main content

Southwest Airlines Community

Taking PRIDE in Equality




In 2019, Southwest Airlines joined the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) Business Coalition for the Equality Act and joined an amicus (“friend of the court”) brief that was filed with the U.S. Supreme Court. The Equality Act was a proposed federal law that would provide the same basic protections to the LGBTQ community as are provided to other protected groups under federal law.


Yesterday, history was made when the Supreme Court of the United States ruled 6-3 that the Civil Rights Act (CRA) protects LGBTQ Employees from discrimination. Previously, Title VII of the CRA banned employment discrimination on the basis of "race, color, religion, sex, or national origin." Now, the definition of sex includes gay, bisexual, and transgender workers. That means it's illegal for employers to fire workers on the basis of their LGBTQ status.


While this doesn’t change anything for Southwest since our current internal discrimination policy already included these protected categories, we are pleased that LGBTQ employees are protected under the law throughout the nation, no matter where in the U.S. they’re employed. 


Southwest is a People-centric Company built by love, with a 49-year history of living by the Golden Rule, treating others with respect, and embracing diversity. We were proud to earn a perfect score on the HRC’s Corporate Equality Index for the fifth consecutive year in 2019. 


I hope you’ll join us in celebrating this wonderful news!



Juan Suarez
Managing Director, Deputy General Counsel

1 Comment
New Arrival

I had a man 6 inches taller than me and at least 100 lbs larger than me reach across the isle and poke me in the arm telling me to shut up because his girl friend doesn't like the sound of my voice. I said excuse me? I am a 5'6, 160 lb half Filipino man and this guy looks about 6'3, 280 lbs.

He proceeded to threaten me with a physical beat down if I don't shut my mouth. I informed him that I was a trained hand fighter and I was not afraid to defend myself.

He gets up and walks to the front of the plane.

Next thing I know I'm being escorted to the back row of the plane by the flight crew that informs me the police would be waiting for me at the gate. I asked for what? Apparently a guy and his girlfriend reported me for threatening them. Seriously, a 6'3, 280lb guy.

I sat in the back of the plane internally upset by the entire ordeal, and 20 minutes later, "big guy" walks by me on his way to the bathroom, and on his way back from the bathroom he leans down and whispers in my ear: "Gotcha N-word".

I am not from African decent, but I do take offense to racism and bullying.

I explained the story to the police when we landed and they said it's my word against him and his entire entourage. They apologized for the situation and I thanked them for their service.

I am hopeful that my story will help stop the racism and bullying that still happens in 2020.