HB544 bad for business

The proposed bill HB544 is poorly conceived, poorly written and clearly violates the first amendment to the constitution. One could expect to see legislation like this in some authoritarian country, but not in the U.S.. This proposed bill is an almost verbatim copy of the Executive Order ex-president Trump signed back in October which has since been rescinded by President Biden.

Our economy needs growth and growth requires diversity of all kinds. This is why dozens of companies – many who do business with the state spend significant dollars and human resources promoting diversity in their workplaces. Small to large companies in New Hampshire are committed to all types of diversity and know it’s essential for their bottom lines. Dozens of NH companies recently participated in a 21 Day Workplace Racial Equity challenge because they value diversity.

One of New Hampshire’s biggest employers Fidelity Investments is clear about making changes to business practices and greater racial understanding. Fidelity Chairwoman Abby Johnson says the company is increasing its diversity commitment by proactively procuring “goods and services from diverse businesses … In 2019, Fidelity spent $140 million with diverse suppliers.” How many of these suppliers are NH based?

The message that HB544 sends to companies, and to the rest of the country is “New Hampshire is intolerant and posseses a white supremacist mindset”. It’s unfortunate these legislators aren’t interested in working to build a stronger business environment instead of promoting racist ideas that divide instead of unify.