Historic collaboration between The City of Pittsburgh and the National LGBT Chamber of Commerce will generate massive social and economic gains for the LGBT business community of Pennsylvania
May 11, 2021
Pittsburgh, PA / Washington, D.C. – The National LGBT Chamber of Commerce (NGLCC), the business voice of the LGBT community, is proud to announce that Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania will soon include NGLCC Certified LGBT Business Enterprise® (Certified LGBTBE®) suppliers and ensure they have equitable access to contracting and procurement opportunities throughout the city. For LGBT citizens of Pittsburgh, this inclusive policy provides fair and equal access to contracting opportunities and economic development programs that drive innovation, create jobs, and promote economic growth throughout the region. Team NGLCC will hold an informational webinar with interested suppliers this summer.
“Thanks to the leadership of Pittsburgh City Councilperson Erika Strassburger, NGLCC public policy lead Jonathan Lovitz, and of our local affiliate chamber, the Three Rivers Business Alliance, LGBT entrepreneurs in the Pittsburgh region will now have the opportunity to create jobs and develop innovations that benefit all who live there,” said NGLCC Co-Founder & President Justin Nelson and CEO Chance Mitchell. “Pittsburgh has a legacy of leadership in promoting inclusivity throughout the many industries that power its economy. Now Governor Wolf’s historic 2016 Executive Order including LGBT Business Enterprises throughout Pennsylvania will take root and grow in the city economies across the Commonwealth. This victory for inclusivity has once again proved our core values that ‘diversity is good for business’ and that ‘if you can buy it, a certified LGBT-owned business can supply it.’ We are excited to see LGBTBEs in every field, from construction to catering and everything in between, help grow the economy of Pittsburgh and beyond.”
“Thanks to the work of our Equal Opportunity Review Commission and Office of Equity to remove barriers and improve procurement processes, the City has increased the number of contracts awarded to minority and women-owned business enterprises and invested over $23 million in the growth of these small businesses,” said Mayor William Peduto. “I am proud to support this legislation sponsored by Councilperson Strassburger and Councilman Kraus that will expand the City’s efforts and enable the City to work with LGBTQIA+-owned firms. Pittsburgh’s economy only grows stronger when we uplift diverse businesses.”
This policy makes Pittsburgh the first city in Pennsylvania to intentionally create an initiative to expand its inclusion of LGBT-owned businesses in municipal contracting and procurement opportunities. Coupled with the educational, mentorship, networking and access to capital programs offered by both the national and Pittsburgh chamber networks, business owners from across all diverse communities in the greater Pittsburgh region will see fresh opportunities to thrive.
“It has been my honor to work with the Three Rivers Business Alliance, the National LGBT Chamber of Commerce, the Mayor’s office as well as many other City departments and Commissions to put pen to paper and allow LGBTQIA+ business owners to more easily participate and do work with the City,” said Councilperson Strassburger. “This bill represents one more step in our march toward equity here in Pittsburgh. I’m hopeful this will help expand and grow our city’s LGBTQIA+ businesses that are already making a positive impact here.”
“I am delighted to sponsor this much needed legislation that Councilmember Strassburger has introduced”, said Councilman Bruce Kraus. “In Pittsburgh, our pride as a city is based in unity. This legislation brings us closer to creating a City that is welcoming for all, with a more unified vision for the future that we want to build.”
Such inclusion is now a best practice of the private sector and of an ever-growing number of states and municipalities, thanks to the advocacy of NGLCC and its state and local affiliate chambers. Recent advocacy wins for NGLCC Certified LGBTBE® suppliers include New York City, Los Angeles, Chicago, Miami, and Nashville, as well as statewide opportunities with Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, and California.
“Three Rivers Business Alliance (3RBA) thanks Pittsburgh City Councilpersons Erika Strassburger, Bruce Kraus, and the rest of the members of the Pittsburgh City Council for the opportunity they have created for LGBT business owners and professionals in the Pittsburgh region. With this legislation, Pittsburgh joins the growing number of metropolitan areas which include NGLCC-certified LGBT Business Enterprises among the City’s pool of certified companies to ensure they have equitable access to contracting and procurement opportunities throughout the City. For LGBT citizens, this inclusive initiative provides fair and equal access to contracting opportunities and economic development programs that drive innovation, create jobs, and promote economic growth throughout the Greater Allegheny region. We are glad to be a part of this historic legislation, and we look forward to working with other municipal authorities and private companies to diversify their supplier networks,” said 3RBA’s President Ronald L. Hicks, Jr.
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NGLCC MEDIA / POLICY CONTACT:
[email protected] | 202.499.3042
The National LGBT Chamber of Commerce (NGLCC) is the business voice of the LGBT community and is the largest global advocacy organization specifically dedicated to expanding economic opportunities and advancements for LGBT people. NGLCC is the exclusive certification body for LGBT-owned businesses, known as Certified LGBT Business Enterprise® (Certified LGBTBE®) suppliers. www.nglcc.org @nglcc