As tech workers flock to Texas, others say the political climate will keep them away

The state’s restrictive abortion law and other conservative policies don’t appeal to some workers with progressive beliefs.

By Shelly BrisbinNovember 4, 2021 7:25 am, ,

As tech companies move to Texas, or expand their footprint here, lots of highly-valued workers are being given the chance to relocate from the East or West coasts. But while some workers have jumped at the chance to call Texas home, others may skip the move, because their progressive views don’t align with the state’s conservative political climate.

Tech expert Omar Gallaga wrote about this recently for Texas Monthly. He told Texas Standard that laws such as SB 8, which effectively bans most abortions, are among the reasons some workers have concerns about Texas.

On the other hand, he says other workers want to come to the state because of its low taxes and more affordable cost of living.

Highlights from this segment:

– Many tech companies rely on a combination of employees who move to Texas and local workers with degrees from well-regarded colleges in the state.

– The hard-right turn of Texas lawmakers this year, including passage of SB 8, restrictive voting changes and a law that requires public school transgender athletes to participation only in sports that align with their gender assigned at birth, has led some employers to take measures to allow their employees to work remotely, rather than moving to Texas if they don’t want to.

–  Some companies, including Apple and Google, that have acknowledged their employees’ conflicts over politics in Texas also faced their own separate backlash from employees over corporate culture. In the long-term, keeping employees who care about cultural issues could mean more accommodations for those who aren’t comfortable in Texas.

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