Benefit Company Legislation
Within the business community, there are entrepreneurs and business leaders who believe that “business” can take a leadership role in solving many of our social and environmental crisis. Those business leaders need to have a legal structure to support their efforts if they choose to focus on purposes other than just maximizing profits.
Did you know that the current corporate legislation in British Columbia does not support companies that decide to be responsible corporate and community citizens?
Legislation governing companies in BC is written to make sure that all decisions made by the board of directors focus on maximizing shareholder value. It is profit-centric to the exclusion of all else. This approach is old and outdated and does not support company directors who want to focus on multiple stakeholders that may include the environment, community, and others. Minority shareholders could challenge a company director because of a decision to do good for other stakeholders instead of solely maximizing profits for shareholders.
We want your help to change this state of affairs. By signing this open letter to the Premier, you are adding your voice of support for NEW Benefit Company legislation in British Columbia that will protect companies that choose to do good. This amendment to the BC Corporation act will not impact existing businesses in any way. It does, however, open the door for a new form of company, a Benefit Company, that is entirely voluntary, for business owners who want to protect their right to use their business as a force for good.
This new Benefit Company legislative amendment has passed second reading in the BC legislature and will go to committee for debate this fall. We are asking for your help to send a message to Victoria that this legislation is good for BC.
Please sign this open letter to Premier Horgan and support BC businesses.