Apple, Symantec, other tech heavies challenge anti-gay legislation

Companies demand veto of controversial bill


Apple, Symantec, and other have put their weight behind efforts to defeat a law in Arizona which would allow discrimination based on sexual orientation.

The companies are among a growing list of businesses that have publicly called on Governor Jan Brewer to veto SB1062, a bill that would expand an existing religious-freedom law to allow businesses to refuse service to customers based on sexual orientation.

Proponents of the bill have argued that it aims to allow business owners to express their religious beliefs. Opponents say that the bill would legalize discrimination against the LGBT community and violate civil rights laws.

Among the long list of firms who have come out against the measures is Apple, which recently kicked off work on a sapphire glass display manufacturing facility in the city of Mesa, outside the Arizona capital of Phoenix. That plant is said to have capacity to build up to 200 million iPhone displays.

According to reports, Apple recently met with Brewer to lobby for a veto of the bill. The company has previously pushed for anti-discrimination laws and has advocated for the rights of its LGBT workers.

Symantec has also come out to fight against SB1062. The security and storage giant is among the firms who signed an open letter to Brewer penned by the Arizona Technology Council. The letter argues that in building a reputation for intolerance and hostility, the state runs the risk of harming business and driving away commerce.

"This legislation will greatly impact our ability to not only attract top talent to move to Arizona, but will also greatly inhibit our ability to recruit businesses to relocate here. We worry about our ability to succeed in competing with other markets," the letter argues.

"This legislation is frivolous, unnecessary and fiscally perilous. Arizona business owners already have the right to refuse business to anyone. There is no need for this legislation, and we believe it is attempting to fix a problem that doesn't exist."

Other big names signing on to the campaign include AT&T, security firm Lumension, and PetSmart. ®

Similar topics


Other stories you might like

  • Global IT spending to hit $4.5 trillion in 2022, says Gartner

    The future's bright, and expensive

    Corporate technology soothsayer Gartner is forecasting worldwide IT spending will hit $4.5tr in 2022, up 5.5 per cent from 2021.

    The strongest growth is set to come from enterprise software, which the analyst firm expects to increase by 11.5 per cent in 2022 to reach a global spending level of £670bn. Growth has fallen slightly, though. In 2021 it was 13.6 per cent for this market segment. The increase was driven by infrastructure software spending, which outpaced application software spending.

    The largest chunk of IT spending is set to remain communication services, which will reach £1.48tr next year, after modest growth of 2.1 per cent. The next largest category is IT services, which is set to grow by 8.9 per cent to reach $1.29tr over the next year, according to the analysts.

    Continue reading
  • Memory maker Micron moots $150bn mega manufacturing moneybag

    AI and 5G to fuel demand for new plants and R&D

    Chip giant Micron has announced a $150bn global investment plan designed to support manufacturing and research over the next decade.

    The memory maker said it would include expansion of its fabrication facilities to help meet demand.

    As well as chip shortages due to COVID-19 disruption, the $21bn-revenue company said it wanted to take advantage of the fact memory and storage accounts for around 30 per cent of the global semiconductor industry today.

    Continue reading
  • China to allow overseas investment in VPNs but Beijing keeps control of the generally discouraged tech

    Foreign ownership capped at 50%

    After years of restricting the use and ownership of VPNs, Beijing has agreed to let foreign entities hold up to a 50 per cent stake in domestic VPN companies.

    China has simultaneously a huge market and strict rules for VPNs as the country's Great Firewall attempts to keep its residents out of what it deems undesirable content and influence, such as Facebook or international news outlets.

    And while VPN technology is not illegal per se (it's just not practical for multinationals and other entities), users need a licence to operate one.

    Continue reading

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2021