Sioux Falls Area Chamber of Commerce - MEDIA RELEASE

September 20, 2017

The Chamber’s position on workforce development and inclusivity

The Sioux Falls Area Chamber of Commerce is focused on advancing and promoting the economic health and quality of life of the region. We support the business community specifically as they work with us to grow Sioux Falls and provide opportunity to newcomers and lifelong residents alike. Workforce challenges persist in our region. Fostering a community that welcomes and celebrates our increasingly diverse community is an important piece of tackling those challenges.

That is why the business community of Sioux Falls is so concerned about recent news-making events which have featured speakers from outside of South Dakota, supporting policies antagonistic to immigrants and new demographic groups in Sioux Falls. These new Americans are already an essential part of the regional workforce. Many have become entrepreneurs and business owners themselves, further contributing to the vibrancy of Sioux Falls.

Legislation and policies that negatively target specific populations will not help Sioux Falls address our changing workforce needs. They will not help grow the state economy and certainly do not create new opportunities for South Dakota residents. Rather, such policies will make it more difficult for employers to fill open positions and further create negative perceptions of the people and businesses of South Dakota, both nationally and internationally.

We should not fear immigrants or refugees who call Sioux Falls home – we should embrace them and work shoulder-to-shoulder with them to achieve shared goals for the betterment of our community. Our history is filled with examples of how different groups were scorned or discriminated against in the past. We believe discrimination is harmful to us all and we should not repeat history.

The Chamber has a track record of supporting policies and initiatives that have grown and sustained the economic strength of Sioux Falls for decades. The best way to bring economic advancement opportunities to all our residents is by fostering an environment that attracts new residents and offers businesses the freedom to recruit talent to Sioux Falls.

Mark Lee
Public Affairs and Communications Director
(605) 373-2004

Jason Ball
President & CEO
(605) 336-1620


  Sioux Falls Area Chamber of Commerce
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