"Putting People First" isn't just a motto, it's a way of life. This past week, CEO Michael Weinholtz testified before the Utah State Legislature about the need to protect the rights of all workers, including the LGBT members of our work family.
Listen to the audio of Michael's speech or read the transcript below!
Good afternoon. It's a pleasure to be before you today to talk about an issue that I believe is critically important to Utah's business community and for the economic development in our state.
My name is Michael Weinholtz, and I am the chief executive officer of CHG Healthcare Services. CHG has been headquartered in Salt Lake City since 1979, and we currently provide jobs for nearly 900 Utahns. We also have six other offices across the United States and employ more than 1,600 people nationwide.
CHG has brought much positive attention to our home state as the industry leader and largest provider of physician staffing services in the United States and the only recent Utah-based company to appear on Fortune magazine's list of the Best Companies to Work For in America ‚Äî a distinction we've earned for four years in a row now. And this year, we ranked as the third best company to work for in the entire United States.
As the largest provider of healthcare staffing in the country, we must compete at a high level, and we can't do that without fully supporting and respecting our employees ‚Äî and that means all of our employees.
When we're talking about competing with businesses on a national level, it is elementary that non-discrimination is part of our culture. That doesn't just mean the culture of our individual business, but also the culture of the state and the community in which we choose to locate and grow our business.
As we're out recruiting and hiring new talent, one of the things that people beyond the borders of the state of Utah want to know is how our state treats gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender individuals. I cannot effectively recruit a talented worker to work at CHG and live in Utah if they are not guaranteed they will have access to the most basic necessities: a roof over their heads and a job to support their families.
At CHG, as with other top Utah businesses including Adobe, eBay, Zions Bank, Ancestry.com and 1-800-CONTACTS, we have instituted our own non-discrimination protections for our own employees. So have the majority of Fortune 1000 companies in the country, who believe in protecting their employees from discrimination.
But if an employee's spouse or other family members who would move to Utah with them are unable to find stable work, or find stable housing simply because of their sexual orientation or gender identity, they will not come here. It is that simple. This hurts individuals, and it hurts Utah businesses by limiting access to a broader pool of talented people that we need to help grow our companies.
CHG is proud to be recognized as No. 3 on Fortune's list of the 100 Best Companies to Work For, and I believe it's a testament to our inclusive culture. We believe that all people ‚Äî whether they are young or old, Latino, black or white, male or female and gay or straight ‚Äî deserve the right to live and work free from discrimination. That means all people are welcome to pursue a thriving career at CHG, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity.
As a business leader in this community, I believe all people should be entitled to similar basic protections across the state. Seventeen Utah municipalities have already recognized this, but a statewide ordinance would eliminate confusion for Utah companies that have multiple locations throughout the state. And, more importantly, for economic development reasons, it would announce to the world that Utah is not only open for business, we are open to everyone.
For all of these reasons, I respectfully ask for your favorable support of S.B. 262. Thank you.