The Northwest Arkansas Council and the Northwest Arkansas Chambers of Commerce support the passage of Arkansas SB622, important legislation that will enhance criminal penalties for crimes motivated by hate. While this legislation takes a different approach than was originally envisioned, its passage will help protect victims of crimes motivated by their membership or association with a recognizable and identifiable class of individuals sharing mental, physical, biological, cultural, political, or religious beliefs or characteristics. The passage of this bill will be an important advancement in our criminal law and will give prosecutors a tool to help combat hate crimes.
Northwest Arkansas supports one of the nation’s fastest growing economies and offers an unparalleled quality of life for its residents. This community is filled with diverse and dynamic talent who contribute to the state’s economic growth with innovative ideas and creative solutions to challenges. We are committed to making Northwest Arkansas an inclusive community that supports all who choose to live here. We must protect our co-workers, friends and neighbors from being targeted for simply living their lives peacefully and authentically.