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Dow Signs Amicus Brief Speaking Out for the Business Case on Marriage Equality

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The Dow Chemical Company (NYSE:DOW) is proud to today sign on to an amicus brief filed in the Supreme Court of the United States (Obergefell v. Hodges case), petitioning the Court to overturn a lower court decision upholding state-level prohibitions, and affirm a uniform principle that all couples share in the right to marry.

Dow joins 379 signatory businesses and organizations that believe employees with partners of the same sex should be permitted to marry if they so choose, and they should be treated identically to their married heterosexual counterparts.

More than 70 percent of Americans live in a state that sanctions and recognizes same-sex marriages, with 13 states that continue to prohibit same-sex couples from marrying, and decline to recognize the valid, existing marriages of citizens married to a spouse of the same sex. The brief argues that this fractured legal landscape harms employers and employees alike, creating legal uncertainty, imposing unnecessary costs and administrative complexities on employers, and impairing business interests and employer/employee relations – thus hindering businesses’ ability to attract and retain the most talented workforce possible.

“Integrity and respect for everyone is core to Dow’s value system,” said Howard Ungerleider, Chief Financial Officer, Dow and Executive Sponsor, GLAD (Gays, Lesbians and Allies at Dow). “Our commitment to driving a culture of diversity is not only a matter of equality and fundamental human rights, it is also a critical business imperative and plays a fundamental role in attracting and retaining the best and brightest talent to deliver on our business strategy.”

For more than a decade, Dow has offered best-in-class practices of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) inclusion in the workplace including equal benefits to same-sex partners for everything from health, dental and life insurance to bereavement leave, relocation and dual career assistance. Dow also recognizes survivor benefits for LGBT colleagues under its pension plan and provides transgender benefits. According to the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), only one in four FORTUNE 500 companies meet these collective criteria.

Ungerleider added, “We applaud like-minded organizations and individuals in both the public and private sectors that foster inclusion, celebrate differences and strive toward a working environment where sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression are irrelevant, and we look forward to seeing these rights extended to all.”

Dow has maintained a 100 percent rating on HRC’s corporate equality index, a national benchmarking tool on corporate policies and practices related to LGBT employees, for a decade. The Company has spoken multiple times on Capitol Hill in recent years on rights in the workplace, including testimony in support of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, and last year was ranked by Workplace Pride Foundation as one of the world’s “Top-5″ LGBT-inclusive employers, recognizing the company for its inclusive policies and practices.

About Dow

Dow (NYSE:DOW) combines the power of science and technology to passionately innovate what is essential to human progress. The Company is driving innovations that extract value from the intersection of chemical, physical and biological sciences to help address many of the world’s most challenging problems such as the need for clean water, clean energy generation and conservation, and increasing agricultural productivity. Dow’s integrated, market-driven, industry-leading portfolio of specialty chemical, advanced materials, agrosciences and plastics businesses delivers a broad range of technology-based products and solutions to customers in approximately 180 countries and in high-growth sectors such as packaging, electronics, water, coatings and agriculture. In 2014, Dow had annual sales of more than $58 billion and employed approximately 53,000 people worldwide. The Company’s more than 6,000 products are manufactured at 201 sites in 35 countries across the globe. References to “Dow” or the “Company” mean The Dow Chemical Company and its consolidated subsidiaries unless otherwise expressly noted. More information about Dow can be found at www.dow.com.

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