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Top U.S. Diverse Business Leaders Urge Arizona Governor to Veto SB 1062


February 24, 2014 - WASHINGTON, DC

WASHINGTON, DC--(Marketwired - February 24, 2014) - Today the leaders of America's most diverse business groups -- and leaders of the National Business Inclusion Consortium (NBIC) joined forces to call on Arizona Governor Jan Brewer to veto Senate Bill 1062 on grounds the bill is blatantly discriminatory and anti-business.

The Arizona legislation creates unprecedented protections for Arizona businesses to use their religious beliefs to deny services and goods to customers.

In their first-ever policy collaboration, their letter was signed by leaders of the National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce (NGLCC), the U.S. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (USHCC), The National Black Justice Coalition, and the U.S. Business Leadership Network: Disability at Work.

The U.S. business leaders wrote "this bill is not written to strengthen protections under Arizona law to defend against religious discrimination as purported, but rather to discriminate against a specific segment of the Arizona population. Signing such a harmful and obviously discriminatory bill will not only have dire consequences for the economy of Arizona, but also your legacy as chief executive of the state."

"There is only one outcome sought by such inflammatory legislation and it is to discriminate against lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender Americans," said NGLCC Co-Founder and President Justin Nelson.

The group agreed the bill will harm the state economy by discouraging new businesses to launch or expand in Arizona and by shrinking a well-qualified, competitive and diverse workforce. "People do not want to live and work in communities where they see themselves, their friends or family members so overtly discriminated against," the group said in their letter to Governor Brewer.

"We have seen this type of ill-conceived legislation coming out of Arizona in the past. We proudly stand with the NGLCC, because we know that such blatantly discriminatory laws whether aimed at the LGBT community or any other group -- they are bad for business and damaging to America's global competitiveness," said Javier Palomarez, President and CEO of the United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.

The business leaders called on the Governor to veto the bill and in doing so to "show political courage and stand up to the blatantly discriminatory and anti-business legislation that is Senate Bill 1062. The time to act is now and the action to take is vetoing this bill. We ask that you do just that."

The full text of the letter may be found here.

About NGLCC
THE NATIONAL GAY & LESBIAN CHAMBER OF COMMERCE (NGLCC)
Founded in 2002, the NGLCC is the business advocate and direct link between lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) business owners, corporations, and government, representing the interest of more than 1.4 million LGBT businesses and entrepreneurs. The NGLCC is committed to forming a broad-based coalition of LGBT owned and friendly businesses, professionals, and major corporations for the purpose of promoting economic growth and the prosperity of our members.

About USHCC
THE UNITED STATES HISPANIC CHAMBER OF COMMERCE (USHCC)
Founded in 1979, the USHCC actively promotes the economic growth and development of Hispanic entrepreneurs and represents the interests of 3.16 million Hispanic-owned businesses across the United States that together contribute in excess of $468 billion to the American economy. It also serves as the umbrella organization for more than 200 local Hispanic chambers and business associations in the United States and Puerto Rico.

About NBJC
THE NATIONAL BLACK JUSTICE COALITION (NBJC)
is a civil rights organization dedicated to empowering Black lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people. NBJC's mission is to end racism and homophobia. As America's leading national Black LGBT civil rights organization focused on federal public policy, NBJC has accepted the charge to lead Black families in strengthening the bonds and bridging the gaps between the movements for racial justice and LGBT equality.

About USBLN
THE US BUSINESS LEADERSHIP NETWORK® (USBLN®)
is a national non-profit that helps business drive performance by leveraging disability inclusion in the workplace, supply chain, and marketplace. The USBLN® serves as the collective voice of nearly 50 Business Leadership Network affiliates across the United States, representing over 5,000 businesses. Additionally, the USBLN® Disability Supplier Diversity Program® (DSDP) is the nation's leading third party certification program for disability-owned businesses, including businesses owned by service-disabled veterans.

The following files are available for download:

Contact:
Victoria Fulkerson
Email: vfulkerson@nglcc.org
Office: 202.234.9181
Cell: 412.559.9147

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