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Michigan business leaders voice opposition to anti-LGBT legislation

In a statement issued today, MCWC members called on the legislature to reject Casperson’s proposed bill, and to update the Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act to include protections for sexual orientation and gender identity in housing, employment, public services and education.

“Anything less, only serves to place barriers between people, stifle creativity and inclusion, and smother the kind of open and transparent society that is necessary to create the jobs of the future,” the member statement reads.  

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Michigan’s Public State Universities, Community Colleges and K-12 Leaders Add Support to Civil Rights Coalition

As schools around Michigan open their doors for the new academic year, calls for updating Michigan’s Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act (ELCRA) to include sexual orientation and gender identity increased in volume today, with the announcement that Michigan’s K-16 education community supports the needed change.  The Presidents Council, State Universities of Michigan, the Michigan Community College Association (MCCA), Michigan Association of School Boards (MASB) and Michigan Association of Intermediate School Administrators (MAISA) all officially signed on to become members of the Michigan Competitive Workforce Coalition. 

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Lansing Regional Chamber of Commerce Joins Michigan Competitive Workforce Coalition

Support for Updates to State Civil Rights Act Continues to Grow

Michigan’s business leaders renewed their call for updates to Michigan’s Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act (ELCRA) today, as the Lansing Regional Chamber of Commerce joined with the Michigan Competitive Workforce Coalition.  The coalition backs the addition of sexual orientation and gender identity protections under Michigan law.

“Mid-Michigan business leaders recognize and embrace the need for ensuring equal protection for all,” said Tim Daman, President and CEO of the Lansing Regional Chamber. “As we collaborate to grow our region’s economy, we need to send a strong message that Michigan is a welcoming state that invites and develops the very finest talent.  Updating Elliott-Larsen helps do that.”

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Great Lakes Bay Regional Alliance, Saginaw County and Flint & Genesee Chambers of Commerce Add Support to Civil Rights Coalition

Area Leaders Call for Addition of Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity Protections

Great Lakes Bay area economic development and business leaders today announced their support for updates to Michigan’s Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act (ELCRA). Adding their voices to the Michigan Competitive Workforce Coalition, which backs the addition of sexual orientation and gender identity protections under Michigan law, are the Great Lakes Bay Regional Alliance, Saginaw County Chamber of Commerce and Flint & Genesee Chamber of Commerce.
“We want to support efforts to make Michigan the most business friendly state possible,” said Dave Dunn, Chairman of the Great Lakes Bay Regional Alliance. “The reality is that we are competing against neighboring states in the Midwest that give these equal protections. It’s long overdue for Michigan to enact legislation to treat every employee in an equal and fair manner.”

The Great Lakes Bay Regional Alliance is made up of 48 board members who represent Bay, Isabella, Midland and Saginaw counties, including the Saginaw County Chamber of Commerce. The Alliance’s mission is to encourage, support and celebrate regional collaboration and initiatives that will improve the economic vitality and quality of life in the Great Lakes Bay Region.
The Flint & Genesee Chamber of Commerce is the leading business membership organization in Genesee County.

Currently, the ELCRA makes it illegal to subject people to differential treatment based on religion, race, color, national origin, age, sex, height, weight, familial status or marital status.  What’s more, employers are prohibited from discriminating in hiring, compensation or the terms, conditions or employment privileges. 
Sexual orientation and gender identity are not included under the ELCRA, however, and many Michigan job providers see this as a barrier to attracting new skilled workers to the state’s economy.

“It’s long past time for Michigan to add these important protections to its civil rights law,” said Jim Murray, one of the coalition co-chairs and president of AT&T Michigan. “In fact, many Michiganders aren’t aware of the fact that it’s not already there.  But we need to be perfectly clear that our state’s doors are open to the best and brightest talent—no matter what.”

Three-fourths of all Michigan residents and most small businesses actively support proposed updates to the ELCRA.  The MCWC provides a statewide forum and coordinating policy voice for individuals and organizations eager to advocate for future changes. Its current membership includes:

Ann Arbor/Ypsilanti Regional Chamber
Arbor Brewing
AT&T
Blue Cross Blue Shield
Chrysler Group LLC
Clark Hill PLC
Consumers Energy
Delta Airlines
Detroit Regional Chamber
The Dow Chemical Company
Google
Grand Rapids Area Chamber of Commerce
Herman Miller
Irwin Seating Company
Issue Media Group

Kellogg Company
Macomb County Chamber of Commerce
Menlo Innovations
The Michigan Theater
PADNOS
Pfizer
Professional Property Management
Quicken Loans
Slow’s Bar BQ
Steelcase
Southwest Michigan First
Strategic Staffing Solutions
Whirlpool Corporation
Zingerman’s

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Support for Updates to State Civil Rights Act Continues to Grow

Ann Arbor/Ypsilanti Regional Chamber, Leading Area Businesses Join Michigan Competitive Workforce Coalition

Washtenaw County, MI – Michigan’s business leaders renewed their call for updates to Michigan’s Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act (ELCRA) today, as the Ann Arbor/Ypsilanti (A2Y) Regional Chamber and major regional enterprises joined with the Michigan Competitive Workforce Coalition.  The coalition backs the addition of sexual orientation and gender identity protections under Michigan law.

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Effort to Update Michigan’s Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act Gains Momentum and Strength

Lake Superior Community Partnership Joins Michigan Competitive Workforce Coalition

Marquette, MI – Support for updating Michigan’s Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act (ELCRA) to include sexual orientation and gender identity continues to gain strength today, as Lake Superior Community Partnership (LSCP) announces that it has officially signed on to become a member of the Michigan Competitive Workforce Coalition. This follows last month’s announcement of ten new members of the coalition, including the Grand Rapids Area Chamber of Commerce and Detroit Regional Chamber.

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Detroit Regional Chamber and Grand Rapids Area Chamber of Commerce Join Effort to Update Michigan’s Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act

More leading Michigan job providers sign on to Michigan Competitive Workforce Coalition

Mackinac Island, MI – As business, opinion and policy leaders from across Michigan gather for the 2014 Detroit Regional Chamber Mackinac Policy Conference, advocates for business from both Detroit and Grand Rapids announced their groups’ support of a recently announced effort to update Michigan’s Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act (ELCRA) to include sexual orientation and gender identity.  Standing together this morning, the Detroit Regional Chamber and the Grand Rapids Area Chamber of Commerce officially signed on to become members of the Michigan Competitive Workforce Coalition. 

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Coalition of State’s Leading Job Providers Forms in Push to Update Michigan’s Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act

“Michigan’s continued economic growth relies on keeping and attracting talented, hard working, determined people.”

Lansing, MI – Job providers from across Michigan’s economic landscape announced today the formation of the Michigan Competitive Workforce Coalition, a partnership of business leaders and their companies who have come together with the goal of working with public policy makers in Lansing to update Michigan’s Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act (ELCRA) to include sexual orientation and gender identity.

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