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Disney under pressure to endorse ex-gay therapy

(BURBANK, CA) Parents and Friends of Ex-Gays & Gays (PFOX), a non-profit organization with chapters in 23 states (including one in San Diego) is pressuring The Walt Disney Company to support the ex-gay community by including ex-gays in Disney’s sexual orientation policies and corporate diversity programs.

Bobbie Strobhar, a Disney stockholder, introduced the resolution in October of 2009. Said Strobhar, “It is about time Disney treated ex-gays with the respect they deserve. Former homosexuals are true models of courage who have been vilified by gay activists."

Disney was opposed to the resolution and had sought permission from the Security and Exchange Commission (SEC) to exclude it from stockholder consideration.

However, with the support of PFOX (who cited a D.C. Superior Court ruling in August of 2009 which stated that former homosexuals are a protected class that must be recognized under sexual orientation non-discrimination law) the SEC decided that Strobhar’s resolution should be voted on by Disney shareholders.

"Like many corporations, Disney implements mandatory diversity training for employees that emphasizes gays, lesbians, bisexuals, and transgenders, but fails to include ex-gays," said Regina Griggs, executive director of PFOX. "It is a serious omission both for the ex-gay community and their supporters."

Disney shareholders will meet in March and a petition asking them to vote against the resolution is circulating online. The petition makes it clear that if this resolution were to pass, Disney would damage the reputation it has built over decades as being a champion for equal rights.

The Walt Disney Company has yet to release a statement regarding the resolution its shareholders will vote on.