More than 70 businesses have signed a letter urging Texas lawmakers to oppose SB6 and any other proposed discriminatory legislation that may threaten Texas’ economic growth. These businesses know that in order to compete in the global economy—and attract the top talent we need to keep our economy thriving—we must keep Texas open for everyone:
“As leaders in the Texas business community, we have an obligation to our employees, customers, shareholders and the Texas communities we serve to oppose discriminatory legislation that jeopardizes the positive environment for our Texas business operations.”READ THE FULL LETTER
Dear Governor Abbott, Lt. Governor Patrick, Speaker Straus and Texas Lawmakers:
Texas is well known as a warm and welcoming state. Its business-friendly climate draws in investment and spurs job creation, while its hospitality, friendliness and openness attract people from across the country and around the globe. As leaders in the Texas business community, we have an obligation to our employees, customers, shareholders and the Texas communities we serve to oppose discriminatory legislation that jeopardizes the positive environment for our Texas business operations.
Discriminatory legislation threatens our economy. By passing SB 6 (the so-called “bathroom bill”) and other discriminatory legislation, Texas could lose billions of dollars in GDP, a critical loss of revenue that would profoundly threaten the state’s ability to fund education, transportation and other essential services. And thousands of jobs could be lost, according to the Texas Association of Business’ economic impact study.
Discriminatory legislation threatens Texas’ travel and tourism industry. Texas receives $68.7 billion in travel spending, which generates $6.2 billion in state and local taxes. Over 1 million jobs are supported by travel, 648,000 direct and 488,000 indirect. This vibrant industry, the second largest in our state, would suffer declines similar to those experienced by other states if Texas loses its reputation as a welcoming destination for all visitors.
Discriminatory legislation also creates costly operational and legal headaches. When proposed legislation creates confusion about whom an employee must serve and whom that employee can turn away, it creates operational chaos—and legal expense—for all Texas businesses. We are in business to serve everyone, and to employ talented people from all walks of life. We need Texas to reflect that commitment to inclusion.
Additionally, discriminatory legislation negatively impacts our ability to recruit top talent, especially among Millennials, who overwhelmingly support non-discrimination protections and seek to live in states that reflect the diversity and inclusion they value. We are in a battle for globally competitive talent, and our ability to successfully recruit and retain our future workforce of Millennial talent is critical to our long-term economic prosperity.
We support the goal of protecting the security and privacy of all Texans. We note that several Texas law enforcement officials have said that non-discrimination ordinances have not reduced public safety. That’s why we oppose unnecessary legislation that will hurt our vibrant economy in Texas.
We believe everyone should be treated with dignity and respect, and we are proud of our companies’ track records on creating diverse workforces and inclusive work environments. We stand together to oppose legislation that would legalize discrimination against any group that would undermine our ability to “Keep Texas Open for Business.”