Economic Social Criteria Investment Screens
Pornography Social Criteria Screen
Approved by the ELCA Church Council – April 21-23, 1990
Updated by the Advisory Committee on Corporate Social Responsibility – September 8, 2006
Approved by the ELCA Church Council – November 2007
Authority: The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) has laid out its concern for health in a social statement “Caring for Health: Our Shared Endeavor” , acknowledging that health is central to our well being, and caring for it is a matter of shared stewardship. The ELCA message on Commercial Sexual Exploitation, adopted by the Church Council of the ELCA on November 11, 2001 clearly states that "Sexual exploitation in any situation, either personally or commercially, inside or outside legally contracted marriage, is sinful because it is destructive of God’s good gift [of sexuality] and human integrity."
Wording of the Screen: The ELCA recommends no investment in firms involved in the production, marketing or distribution of pornography.
Definition of Problem: The ELCA message describes sexual exploitation in terms of pornography in all forms, sex tourism, strip clubs and other means of sexual exploitation that degrades all participants, both providers and customers.
Recognizing that various investors will implement this along a continuum, for the purpose of this screen pornography might include companies that manufacture pornography or other products of the sex industry, and those companies selling, promoting and marketing in this industry. It also includes other corporations deriving profit from pornography. These might include distribution networks (television, movies/videos, hotel chains, etc) as well as industries touched by sex trafficking.
Social policy and studies:
Caring for Health: Our Shared Endeavor [ELCA, 2003]
A Message on Commercial Sexual Exploitation [ELCA, 2001]
The Victims of Pornography and Pornography [ALC, 1985 and 1974]