GSBA Vision & Mission

MISSION: To combine business development, leadership and social action to expand economic opportunities for the LGBT Community and those who support equality for all.

Friday, January 20, 2012

An Open Letter from the Washington State Business Community on the Importance of Marriage Equality

An Open Letter from the Washington State Business Community on the Importance of Marriage Equality

Dear Washington State Legislators,

Washington has rich resources that position our state for continued economic success in the 21st century - a prime geographic location, vibrant industries and renowned educational, research and cultural institutions.  But employers and business leaders know that the single greatest asset Washington has to offer is its ability to attract the best talent from around the world.  This is crucial because the size, quality and diversity of the talent pool are the first criteria for businesses in determining where to locate jobs.

Washington competes with other major economic hubs to attract top talent.  To remain economically viable, states must demonstrate a commitment to creating an open, healthy and equitable environment in which to live and work - one that reflects the needs and expectations of a diverse workforce.  This is why it is so important that Washington State pass marriage equality.  As other states and countries across the world extend marriage equality to their citizens, it will become increasingly difficult to recruit the best talent if Washington cannot offer the same benefits and protections.

In 2006, The Williams Institute at the University of California - Los Angeles estimated the impact of allowing same-sex couples to marry on Washington's state budget.   They concluded that allowing same-sex couples to marry will result in a net gain of approximately $3.9 million to $5.7 million each year for the state, with little to no effect on administrative and court costs. 
The majority of Fortune 500 employers have adopted non-discrimination policies that include sexual orientation and extended domestic partner benefits long before most cities and states passed them into law. These policies not only work to retain quality employees, but also to improve productivity. Employees can now focus more on their work instead of worrying about their and their spouse's benefits and safety.

As Washingtonians, employers and business leaders, we believe that attracting talent is key to our state's economic future.  Demographers have found that the new generation of highly desirable workers are likely to choose where they want to live before looking for a job, and they cite diversity and inclusion as one of the key factors in their decision. 
  We strongly urge the Washington State Legislature to enact marriage equality legislation to help maintain our competitive advantage in attracting the best and brightest people the world has to offer, and to reaffirm our commitment to fairness.

Business Name

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