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  • Writer's pictureAIM Team

AIM fights bill allowing government to dictate terms of private contracts on DEI

February 29, 2024 - SB 980, sponsored by Sen. Rusty Black, is a misguided bill that is intended to keep contractors from forcing subcontractors to adopt diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) policies and to block the state from doing business with any business that is engaged in any boycott.

AIM president/CEO Ray McCarty testifed against the bill because it would allow the state to dictate terms of a private contract between two private companies. "State government should not interfere with the right of companies to enter into contracts with each other," he said.

The interference would apply to contracts negotiated or performed in Missouri and to any contract with at least one party having a principal place of business in Missouri. To make matters worse, the bill also provides a civil cause of action, allowing businesses to be sued for unlawful business practices if the section is violated. And finally, the bill also allows the Attorney General to enforce the interference in contracts through preventative measures and fines.

"Businesses should be free to contract with whomever and under whatever conditions they want without government interference," said McCarty.

Only the Opportunity Solutions Project, a 501(c)(4) organization based in Florida represented by James Harris, supported the bill.

Joining AIM in testifying against the bill were the Kansas City Area Chamber, Kansas City Council, BJC, NAACP, Greater St. Louis Inc. and others.

The Committee took no action following the hearing.



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