80+ Businesses in Missouri Form Coalition to Defeat Anti-LGBT Constitutional Amendment

By Adam Polaski • April 12, 2016 • 11:30 am

This morning, April 12, many of Missouri’s most respected business leaders announced the formation of Missouri Competes, a coalition of 80+ businesses large and small from across the state who oppose Senate Joint Resolution 39, which would place a proposed constitutional amendment on the 2016 ballot. The amendment, if approved, would allow businesses and individuals to legally refuse services to LGBT people across Missouri.

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SJR-39 is scheduled for a hearing in the Emerging Issues Committee this evening. It has already passed in the Senate, so just two committee votes and a full vote of the House are the only hurdles left for the anti-LGBT bill to clear before going before voters. The Governor, who has expressed disapproval of the bill, will not have an opportunity to veto.

Some of the major businesses that are members of Missouri Competes include: MasterCard, Dow Chemical, Marriott, Geotechnology, Hyatt Hotels, Monsanto, Google Fiber, Express-Scripts, Salesforce, Pfizer, Purina Nestle, the Kansas City Chamber of Commerce, and the St. Louis Regional Chamber of Commerce, just to name a few.

Freedom for All Americans Executive Director Matt McTighe said today:

“In order for states to thrive, they must be open and welcoming to everyone, including LGBT individuals and their families. As we’ve seen in Indiana, North Carolina and now Mississippi, states that pass laws legalizing discrimination against LGBT people lose out on millions of dollars in business, jobs and tax revenue. Unfortunately, the same thing will happen in Missouri if lawmakers pass SJR 39.”

Freedom for All Americans is proud to serve as a steering committee member of Missouri Competes, working alongside our partner organizations at PROMO, the statewide organization dedicated to LGBT equality in Missouri.

Steph Perkins, PROMO Executive Director, said today:

“We have seen the real and potential economic impact of similar bills in states like Indiana, Georgia, and North Carolina, losing millions in revenue, conventions, businesses, and concerts. PROMO thanks the nearly 100 businesses that have joined Missouri Competes to publicly and strongly oppose SJR 39, a bill that is bad for Missouri and bad for business, and we urge the legislature to listen. The Missouri House still has an opportunity to avoid these negative economic outcomes by stopping SJR 39.”

There are currently nearly 100 members of Missouri Competes. Businesses who would like to join or learn more about Missouri Competes can visit www.missouricompetes.org.


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