NGLCC Denounces Florida’s Latest LGBT Discrimination Bill as Bad for Business

October 22, 2015
The National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce views the introduction of Florida’s latest discrimination bill (H.B. 401) as nothing less than reprehensible and an open invitation to publicly discriminate against tax-paying, law-abiding LGBT Floridians. The law is morally offensive and detrimental to business climate of the Sunshine State. Laws allowing religious exemptions to discriminate are a desperate and callous backlash against the success of marriage equality and other advances for the LGBT community.  Public opinion echoes the courts that equality is essential for American progress, particularly in business.
“Florida is a national leader in tourism, research, and entrepreneurship—and we vehemently stand against any bill that would allow for the legal discrimination of its LGBT citizens. LGBT inclusion is associated with higher levels of entrepreneurship and is linked to GDP growth, whereas LGBT discrimination goes hand-in-hand with a decline in productivity and success,” said NGLCC Co-Founder & President Justin Nelson.  “As for the NGLCC, this law would make it very hard for us to take our annual conference there again- a conference that brought over 800 business leaders & corporate allies to Florida and had an multi-million dollar economic impact in Ft. Lauderdale this year. We will not subject our attendees to potential discrimination, and I know we will be one of many conferences that will look elsewhere.”
NGLCC works closely with its local affiliate LGBT chambers, including MBA Orlando and the Tampa Bay, Miami-Dade, and Greater Fort Lauderdale Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce, as well as hundreds of hardworking LGBT entrepreneurs in Florida to create equal opportunities to create jobs, innovate industries, and raise revenues for the state. This law threatens their ability to do business and create success in Florida. Beyond that, this law essentially relegates LGBT people in Florida to second-class citizens, who now must question whether they will be served in certain restaurants or be allowed to shop in particular stores in the name of religious exemption. Adding to the heinousness of this bill is the blatant attacks on loving families and those in dire need of medical care who would be affected by this attempt to undo court decisions regarding adoption rights and access to the Affordable Care Act.
This bill is quite similar to others which have been defeated and met with public disapproval in state legislatures across the country. The National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce is dedicated to stopping legalized discrimination from becoming the status quo. Currently, NGLCC is working with our affiliate chambers from coast to coast to dissuade lawmakers from passing a similar bill and focus on creating intentionally inclusive opportunities for all citizens to achieve the American Dream.
The National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce is the business voice of the LGBT community and is the largest global not-for-profit advocacy organization specifically dedicated to expanding economic opportunities and advancements for LGBT people. NGLCC is the exclusive certification body for LGBT owned businesses.
Adam Shapiro

Read and download the PDF Press Release here


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