In 2016, after North Carolina passed a law that limited LGBT protections and restricted bathroom usage for transgender people, PayPal canceled its planned location in Charlotte, the NBA scrapped plans to hold its All-Star game there, Deutsche Bankhalted expansions planned for Cary, N.C. and the NCAA pulled championship games from the state.
It’s a series of revenue losses that a group of more than 190 Tennessee businesses don’t want to see their state repeat. They have joined together as a coalition, called Tennessee Thrives, to warn lawmakers against similar legislation that they say could be harmful to the state’s economy and impinges on inclusivity, friendliness and equality.
“When everything is going so well, when there is so much opportunity and potential for prosperity, why would we throw a wrench into the works by sending out a message of exclusion?” CMT President Brian Philips said. Pointing to North Carolina, he said, “We don’t want to be that.”
Brian Philips, president of CMT (Photo: Shelley Mays)
The businesses who have signed on range from Methodist Le Bonheur hospital in Memphis to Edley's Bar-B-Que in Nashville to the Jack Daniel's Distillery in Lynchburg, Tenn. HCA, Bridgestone Arena and the Tennessee Aquarium are also among the large employers that have signed on, along with The ...