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to Section One | to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, May 20, 2016 - Volume 44 Issue 21
Wells Fargo VP linked to group behind Washington's anti-Trans I-1515
Section One
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Wells Fargo VP linked to group behind Washington's anti-Trans I-1515

by Mike Andrew - SGN Staff Writer

Wells Fargo Vice President Jeffrey Grubb has been linked to one of the right-wing groups behind I-1515, the anti-Transgender initiative that may be on state ballots in November, according to the Northwest Accountability Project.

Grubb is on the board of directors of the Murdock Charitable Trust, an innocuously named entity that has handed out money to several anti-LGBT and anti-union organizations.

One of the groups the Murdock Trust has funded is the Alliance Defending Freedom, an Arizona-based outfit backing the wave of efforts to repeal LGBT protections across the country. They were one of the groups behind HB 2 in North Carolina and I-1515 here in Washington state.

'Wells Fargo executive, Jeffrey Grubb, as part of the Murdock Charitable Trust's board, has approved grants to the Alliance Defending Freedom, who are behind the discrimination laws in NC and other states, while Wells Fargo claims to be a supporter of equality and fairness,' said Monisha Harrell of Equal Rights Washington at a May 18 protest at Wells Fargo's downtown Seattle office.

'It's hurtful to me - and just plain unethical - to run marketing campaigns to bring in the money of LGBT customers while allowing one of your senior executives to work towards hurting our LGBT families and communities.'

The Northwest Accountability Project describes itself as a 'social welfare organization dedicated to educating the public on the issues that enhance the well-being of middle-class families and workers while shining a light on extremism and the moneyed special interests that attempt to bring an agenda of hate and division to Washington and Oregon.'

The group has organized Wells Fargo customers and other community members to demand that Grubb and Wells Fargo sever connections to anti-LGBT and anti-worker funders.

Seattle activist groups and a coalition of labor unions have written to Seattle Mayor Ed Murray and the City Council asking them to divest from Wells Fargo.

The Murdock Trust has handed out millions of dollars to anti-LGBT and anti-worker groups including:

o Nearly $1 million to the Alliance Defending Freedom.

o Nearly $3.5 million to the Heritage Foundation. Heritage Foundation's DeVos Center for Religion and Civil Society, where a key staff member has called same-sex marriage 'a lie' and has advocated for Gay conversion therapy.

o More than $200,000 to the Portland Fellowship, an ex-Gay Christian ministry in Oregon that has practiced Gay conversion therapy and advocates for 'freedom from homosexuality.'

o $375,000 to the anti-worker Freedom Foundation that opposes the minimum wage and has argued against paid sick days.

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