Big tech companies and even start-ups have been fascinated with Texas as they continue their efforts to become a tech haven. But the state is in a brink of collapsing after it passed restrictive laws such as the new Abortion Law which many think is a degenerating measure on women’s rights.
Over the past years, tech companies such as Tesla’s Elon Musk, Oracle, Hewlett-Packard have been resolving in the state with expanded presence through warehouses opening and data centers of giant companies like Facebook, Amazon and Apple.
But the Lone Star State’s swift shift to maximum restriction mode on human rights combined with the lowest health measure on the COVID-19 handling has forced may CEOs of different huge tech companies to take into consideration other options for their company’s operation in Texas.
Tech company leaders have aired their worries both on their workers’ wellbeing as well as the possible effects of the new laws in employing talent from Texas since growing number of people are considering of moving somewhere else.
Vivek Bhaskaran, chief executive of Austin-based Question Pro said, “We already find it extremely challenging to attract tech workers.” He also stated that there are more jobs in the industry than talents. “This seems like an extremely unnecessary conversation we’re going to have to have” with potential hires.
“I’m not a politician; I can’t change anything. But I’m still responsible for my employees in Texas, and I have a moral responsibility to them,” Bhaskaran added.
In a report by The Chron, Texas tops the nation in terms of population growth in 2020 to which it attracted 373,965 residents. According to experts, though it might still be too early to tell if the new laws will trigger huge change in workers migrating to the state, they believe that the latest measures could potentially lead to a halt of left-leaning tech workers who are considering moving to the state.
“You might see a slowdown,” said Richard Alm, a writer in residence at Southern Methodist University’s Cox School of Business in Dallas who studies Texas’ economy. “This has potential to impact the supply of labor if workers are less willing to relocate to Texas.”
For tech industry leaders, their major concern is the direction Texas will take after it implemented restrictive measure on human rights like voting restrictions and the new abortion ban which can affect employees and talent hiring.
Most of CEOs have been open in airing that they opposed the restrictions and extending alternatives to their workers if they want to move somewhere else.
“Ohana if you want to move we’ll help you exit TX. Your choice”. Salesforce’s CEO Marc Benioff said in a Tweet which was quoted by California’s Governor Gavin Newsom who replied “Welcome to California.”
In a report by CNBC, both Lyft and Uber already announced that they would cover any legal costs for their drivers who will be sued for transporting women who wants to get abortions. Bumble, an online dating company, also sated that it begun a fund to help women who wants to get abortion in the state.
“These are incredibly personal issues that directly impact many of us — especially women,” Salesforce told employees in a message recovered by CNBC. “We recognize and respect that we all have deeply held and different perspectives. As a company, we stand with all of our women at Salesforce and everywhere.”
It goes on saying, “With that being said, if you have concerns about access to reproductive healthcare in your state, Salesforce will help relocate you and members of your immediate family.”