The Rev. Franklin Graham says Target doesn't need to spend $20 million to add unisex bathrooms to 300 of its stores nationwide to get its customers back, instead it needs to drop its transgender bathroom policy altogether.
Target recently announced that to end the American Family Association's boycott of the retail giant, it would install a single-use bathrooom in each of its stores that don't already have one. However, men who identify as female would still be allowed to go into women's bathrooms and changing rooms.
In a Facebook post from Wednesday, Graham said Target's "refusal to drop its transgender bathroom policy is going to cost the company — and the shareholders — big bucks!"
"Fortune reports that 'as it looks to reverse a drop in shopper traffic' Target is going to spend $20 million to install single-stall locking bathrooms at many of its stores," wrote Graham.
"They could've saved a lot of money — and a lot of customers— by not adopting their dangerous policy in the first place!"
Graham's post, which by Thursday morning already had over 15,000 shares and 39,000 likes, stressed the significance of the sheer number of people who boycotted Target over their policy.
"When over a million people sign a pledge to boycott, that's a loud and clear message Target shouldn't have a problem understanding — biological men do not need access into women's bathrooms or dressing rooms," added Graham.
In April, Target's corporate leadership announced they would uphold the retailer's bathroom policy that allows customers and employees to go into any bathroom and dressing room they want, even if it doesn't match their birth sex.
"In our stores, we demonstrate our commitment to an inclusive experience in many ways. Most relevant for the conversations currently underway, we welcome transgender team members and guests to use the restroom or fitting room facility that corresponds with their gender identity," stated Target.
"Everyone deserves to feel like they belong. And you'll always be accepted, respected and welcomed at Target."
In response, over a million people signed onto a boycott of Target organized by the American Family Association. Target proceeded to see its sales and stock suffer from the backlash against their policy.
While Target announced that it would spend $20 million to install single use restrooms in 300 stores, Fortune magazine reported: "The vast majority of Target stores already have the single-stall bathrooms but the retailer will add them to more locations by November, and then again after the holiday season. ... So the last thing Target needed was to alienate any of customer base, given that it is a $75 billion-a-year retailer that caters to a wide swathe of America, including socially conservative shoppers."
While some have seen the recent concession as progress, others including AFA President Tim Wildmon, maintain the latest move by Target is not enough.
"Our major concern was that Target's policy would grant voyeurs and sexual predators easier access to their victims by allowing men in women's restrooms and changing areas, which puts women and girls in danger," wrote Wildmon to Target CEO Brian Cornell.
"Unisex bathrooms are fine, but our request has always been that Target maintain the gender-specific bathrooms as well — if the company is interested in guaranteeing the safety and privacy of women and girls who patronize the retailer's stores."