Testimony presented at hearing on Anti-BDS Legislation, S.1689/H.1685, July 18, 2017
Honorable Chairperson and Members of the Joint Committee,
My name is Brenton Stoddart. I am a resident of Harvard, Massachusetts, an employee of and son of the CEO of Senscio Systems Inc., a rapidly growing healthcare business in Boxborough, Massachusetts.
The word Senscio draws from two Latin roots: Sensi, which means to sense, and Scio, which means to understand and to know. We understand that “An Act to prohibit Discrimination in State Contracts” unconstitutionally attacks the free speech of individuals right to boycott, as upheld by NAACP v. Claiborne Hardware Company (1982).
As a small business that receives grants from and contracts with the State of Massachusetts, my individual ability to voice my conscience on issues of moral integrity is under threat by this bill. I worry that my support for the BDS movement as a way to express my concern about the apartheid conditions created by Israel’s occupation of Palestine may adversely impact the growth of Senscio Systems, to the detriment of the economy of Massachusetts.
At Senscio, we pride itself on our diversity and will always uphold all anti-discrimination laws.This bill will not prevent discriminations; it will simply suppress an individual’s right to organize against injustice.
I urge you to consider this bill carefully and to study the many pieces of written testimony that are being submitted along with mine. This bill should not leave this committee.