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Salesforce CEO says it will help Texas workers wanting to move over abortion law

FILE - In this photo taken Tuesday, Oct. 30, 2018, Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff speaks at a luncheon in San Francisco. In a forthcoming book, “Trailblazer,” due out Oct. 15, 2019, Benioff calls on activist CEOs to lead a revolution that puts the welfare of people and the planet ahead of profits.
FILE - In this photo taken Tuesday, Oct. 30, 2018, Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff speaks at a luncheon in San Francisco. In a forthcoming book, “Trailblazer,” due out Oct. 15, 2019, Benioff calls on activist CEOs to lead a revolution that puts the welfare of people and the planet ahead of profits. (Eric Risberg/AP)

DALLAS — The CEO of Salesforce said the company will help employees leave Texas, and he did so while retweeting a story linking the offer to concern about Texas’ new anti-abortion law.

Salesforce, which sells customer-management software and has offices in Chicago, joins a small number of companies that have reacted against the Texas law.

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Indeed the Tribune reported last week that World Business Chicago, the public-private operation that serves as the city’s economic development arm, took out a full-page ad in the Sunday Dallas Morning News inviting corporations to head north to do business here, while taking a shot at the state’s more restrictive abortion and voting laws.

San Francisco-based Salesforce told employees in a Slack message it will help them move “if you have concerns about access to reproductive healthcare in your state,” CNBC reported.

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On Friday night, CEO Marc Benioff retweeted a post about the story, adding, “Ohana if you want to move we’ll help you exit TX. Your choice.” Ohana is a Hawaiian term for family.

The company did not return messages for comment.

The Texas law passed the Republican-controlled state Legislature and was signed by Republican Gov. Greg Abbott in May but didn’t go into effect until this month. It bans most abortions after six weeks, before many women know whether they are pregnant, and lets private residents sue anyone who helps a woman get an abortion.

By a 5-4 vote, the U.S. Supreme Court declined to block the law. This week the U.S. Justice Department sued Texas to block the law.

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Ride-hailing companies Uber and Lyft, both based in San Francisco, have said they will pay legal fees for any drivers who are sued for taking a woman to an abortion clinic. Dating-app provider Bumble, which is based in Texas, said it will create a relief fund for people affected by the law.

Abortion-rights activists have pressured Texas-based companies to criticize the law, but most have remained silent.

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