Santa Ana, Calif., June 9, 2020 – Black lives matter in our neighborhoods. Black lives matter on the Internet. Black lives matter in our business.
George Floyd was arrested by Minneapolis police officers for allegedly paying for cigarettes with a counterfeit $20 bill. For 8 minutes and 46 seconds, an arresting officer held his knee over Mr. Floyd’s neck while three other officers looked on. An independent autopsy confirmed what we all knew from watching the pieced-together videos—that George Floyd was murdered.
The Technology Councils of North America (TECNA), representing over 60 technology associations across the U.S. and Canada comprising over 20,000 tech firms, stands with communities mourning the victims of police homicide. We stand with the absolute right to peacefully protest against police brutality and racism. We stand with the journalists who must cover these events instead of being placed in handcuffs or fired upon while reporting abuses of power. And we stand with all those using technology – cameras, phones and digital tools – to make sure we cannot turn away from the truth and freely express ourselves.
We support the majority of law enforcement that protects and serves our communities while rejecting racism and aggression. We support protecting the tools that allow people to organize, assemble and speak securely and without censorship. Curtailing freedom of speech is counter to the most sacred drivers of technology innovation – independent thinking, creativity and entrepreneurship.
Therefore, TECNA commits to the following:
- To continuously denounce racism and acts and words of hate.
- We re-affirm our commitment to promote the value of diversity, collaboration and inclusion in all the communities we represent across the U.S. and Canada.
- To immediately appoint a Task Force comprised of our members to make specific recommendations on increasing the number people of color and diversity in the tech workforce, on corporate boards, on the staff of our member associations and on the boards of directors of our tech councils.
- To oppose any legislation or government actions restricting freedom of expression on the Internet or through the use of technology.
Just as the government should allow for technology innovation to flourish – it should do the same with freedom of expression.
Black lives matter.
TECNA will continue opposing police brutality and abuses of power and supporting tools that allow people to peacefully organize, assemble, and speak securely and without fear and censorship.
About the Technology Councils of North America
The Technology Councils of North America (TECNA) represents approximately 60 IT and Technology trade organizations that, in turn, represent more than 22,000 technology-related companies in North America. TECNA serves its members and the industry through its strong peer-to-peer network and its regional initiatives to raise the visibility and viability of the technology industry. This is accomplished by empowering regional technology organizations and serving as their collective voice in growing the North American technology economy. More information on TECNA can be found at: www.tecna.org or @techcouncils on Twitter.