New Minority Chamber Alliance in Business Emerges to Provide Economic Equity for the Greater Austin Region

Press Conference
Thursday March 24th 5:30pm
City Hall – Media Room
Attendees: Council Members, DECA Representatives

(March 24th, 2022 – Austin, TX) The Diversity and Ethnic Chamber Alliance (“DECA”) comprised of the Austin LGBT Chamber, Greater Austin Asian Chamber, Greater Austin Black Chamber, Greater Austin Hispanic Chamber of Commerce are pleased to introduce to the community our shared vision to create a Regional Economic Equity Development Plan (“REED Plan”) as a way to reduce barriers and create equity for the small businesses and the workforce communities we serve. The vision of the DECA collaboration is to better the integration of individuals, firms, and communities who have not shared proportionately in the overall rise in local prosperity.

It’s no secret that, in the aggregate, Austin has done exceptionally well economically in recent decades. It’s also no secret that the benefits of this overall prosperity have been unevenly distributed. In recent decades, economic inequality has grown throughout the country, decreasing economic opportunity for millions of Americans. Austin, Texas has long been one of the nation’s fastest growing cities, and over the last decade, it has been known for its strong economy and increasing diversity. What is not so well known is that Austin shows how a growing population and economy does not equally lift up all people. In fact, Austin is an example that even with growth, historically disenfranchised communities can be left further and further behind.

The pandemic has put focus on our communities, in that the economic challenges created by COVID-19 have a disproportionate impact on industries that tend to be heavily minority represented.  As a result, the opportunity to bear resources to address the issue has the possibility of creating real leverage; successfully responding to the short-term challenges ultimately lead to much greater long-term sustainability and therefore prosperity. The REED Plan will cover access to affordable and workplace housing, transportation infrastructure and public transit access, procurement opportunities in public and private sectors, workforce development, intentional recruitment,  employee resource groups, entrepreneurship, childcare, generational wealth and many more topics with strategic and tactical approach to each culminating in reducing barriers and create access to prosperity for our business/workforce communities under the combined stewardship of the DECA Chambers.

Contact info:

Austin LGBT Chamber of Commerce
Tina Cannon, CEO

Greater Austin Black Chamber
Tam Hawkins, CEO

Greater Austin Asian Chamber
Fang Fang, CEO

Greater Austin Hispanic Chamber
Brittney Rodriguez, Interim CEO