March 1, 2024 Less than a minute read

Missouri Chamber opposes costly anti-DEI legislation

The Missouri Chamber of Commerce and Industry opposed legislation this week that would penalize private businesses for implementing diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) policies.

The Senate Government Accountability Committee heard SB 980 earlier this week. The legislation would prohibit seeking information on DEI classifications (race, ethnicity, nationality, socioeconomic status, sex, sexual orientation, gender or gender identity) as part of any contractual agreement between two private companies.

Phillip Arnzen, director of legislative affairs for the Missouri Chamber, said, “The DEI-related prohibitions in this legislation put businesses at a higher risk for litigation and would be an additional liability for private entities. These restrictions would limit which businesses might want to come to Missouri and do business in the state.”

The bill also contains a provision prohibiting contracts in which one of the parties engages in an economic boycott. Arnzen noted this creates a new mandate on businesses and that a change to procurement procedures often comes with unintended costs.

For more information, contact Arnzen at or call 573-654-3511.


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