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Procter & Gamble Backs Gay Marriage

Packs of Procter & Gamble Co. Oral-B toothbrushes, from left, Head & Shoulders shampoo, Pampers diapers, Tide laundry deterge
Packs of Procter & Gamble Co. Oral-B toothbrushes, from left, Head & Shoulders shampoo, Pampers diapers, Tide laundry detergent and Ariel laundry detergent are displayed in a store off a highway near Ganeshpur, in the state of Uttar Pradesh, India, on Wednesday, April 18, 2012. Winning over rural India is important to Unilever, Procter & Gamble Co. and Emami because about 69 percent of India's 1.2 billion people live in villages. Photographer: Prashanth Vishwanathan/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Add Procter & Gamble to the ever-growing list of companies to openly support marriage equality.

The Cincinnati Enquirer reports that the Ohio-based consumer products giant has taken a public stand on same-sex marriage in what P&G's Chief Global Diversity Officer William Gipson describes as "statement of support for our employees."

Added Chief Legal Officer Deborah P. Majoras: "We have always supported our employees and fostered a culture of inclusion and respect -- this includes the right to marry whomever they choose and to have that union legally recognized."

This is the first time that P&G has gone on the record to back same-sex marriage, but the company has had a solid track record of supporting the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community, the Cincinnati Business Courier points out.

The Fortune 500 company -- which comprises brands including Pantene, Crest and Tide -- has been a sponsor of the Cincinnati Pride parade since 2011 and began including LGBT-specific anti-discrimination language in an employment statement in 1992, according to the report.

The move has received praise from a number of LGBT rights organizations, including the Human Rights Campaign.

Earlier this month, a 6th Circuit appeals panel upheld same-sex marriage bans in Ohio, Michigan, Kentucky and Tennessee, the Associated Press reported. Immediately afterward, attorneys for two of the plaintiffs in Ohio's same-sex marriage court battle asked the U.S. Supreme Court to take up the issue.

CORRECTION: A previous version of this article mischaracterized the appeals court's action with regard to the lower courts' rulings on the marriage bans, suggesting they too had upheld the statutes.

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