Hilarie Burton is speaking up against Hallmark and their reason behind letting her go due to inclusivity demands. Burton says that Hallmark fired her after she wanted to create an inclusive ad for them, and it was not met well. Hallmark received criticism after pulling the ad that featured a same sex couple kissing at their wedding. Hallmark reportedly caved to the pressure from a conservative group known as One Million Moms, which is a division of the American Family Association.
37-year-old Burton got onto her social media to share the experience she had with Hallmark. Burton wrote: “Just going through some old emails from a #Hallmark job I was ‘let go’ from back in January. I had insisted on a LGBTQ character, an interracial couple and diverse casting. I was polite, direct and professional.” She followed this up by saying “But after the execs gave their notes on the script and NONE of my requests were honored, I was told ‘take it or leave it.’ I left it. And the paycheck. Sh**ty being penalized for standing up for inclusivity. I really wanted that job. It was close to my house. It paid really well. It was about the military, which you all know I hold dear.” She said even now she’d still walk away from this, regardless of all the potential good Hallmark had to offer. Her morals are bigger and more important than her paycheck.
Hallmark had received a lot of controversy over the same-sex commercial ad. One Million Moms says their mission is to “stop the exploitation of our children, especially by the entertainment media,” in which they started a petition against Hallmark and the same-sex commercial. However, they received more backlash for the removal of the commercial ad. Because of this, The network’s CEO, Mike Perry, apologized for the removal and promised the ad would be back on television. Perry said that Hallmark would be “working with GLAAD to better represent the LGBTQ community across our portfolio of brand.”
Burton also expressed her gratitude for her husband, Jeffrey Dean Morgan, in all of this. She is able to stand up of for her morals and what she believes is right, rather than just taking a job to pay the bills. She recognizes that many are not able to do this and is very grateful to be able to have a voice in the community. Hallmark came through and is rightfully representing the LGBTQ community.