The Honorable Janice K. Brewer
Governor, State of Arizona
1700 West Washington Street
Phoenix, AZ 85007
Dear Governor Brewer,
On behalf of the members of the Association of Flight Attendants – CWA (AFA) representing more than 60,000 members, including 3,000 members residing in Arizona, at 19 carriers including American (formerly America West and US Airways) and Mesa Airlines, I am writing to urge you to veto SB 1062 that was passed by the Arizona legislature last week.
While proponents argue that the intent of the bill is to expand the state’s definition of religious rights, the reality is that it paves the way for wide-ranging discrimination. Under SB 1062, businesses, groups and organizations could legally discriminate based on faith, race, sexual orientation or for any reason, as long as they demonstrate that the discrimination is linked to a “sincerely held” religious belief. The vague and highly subjective verbiage “sincerely held” gives far too much leeway for discriminatory practices.
Among the nation’s leading advocates for equality, AFA has a long and proud history of overcoming discrimination. We have worked to ensure that women receive equal pay, to improve working conditions, and even had to fight for Flight Attendants’ rights to marry and have children. We were leaders in calling for inclusion and benefits for all of our members regardless of gender, gender identity, race, religion or sexual orientation.
Allowing SB 1062 to become law would be a historic and economic step backwards – one that could lead to a hostile environment for our members who live, work and transit Arizona. And we are concerned about the impact of such discriminatory practices on air traffic to Arizona cities where our members work. These potential repercussions of this bill are simply unacceptable to us.
Governor Brewer, you have vetoed similar legislation in the past. It is my hope that you veto SB 1062 and send a definitive message that Arizona is not, and will not, become a state that provides a legitimized pathway for hatred and discrimination.