Axios Dallas

Picture of the Dallas skyline.

Happy Thursday! Simplify.

🌀 Today's weather: Only getting hotter. High of 96.

🎡 Sounds like: "Hit or Miss"

πŸ—£ Situational awareness: A fourth-grader who survived the school shooting in Uvalde testified yesterday before a U.S. House committee that she covered herself in blood to trick the shooter into believing she was dead.

Today's newsletter is 931 brave words β€” a 3.5-minute read.

1 big thing: Texas isn't LGBTQ+ friendly

Data: Out Leadership; Chart: Erin Davis/Axios Visuals

Texas trails nearly all states when it comes to offering an inclusive climate for LGBTQ+ workers.

Driving the news: A new report from Out Leadership says Texas ranks 42nd for its business climate for the LGBTQ+ community.

Why it matters: Companies seeking to expand in Texas may find it difficult to attract and retain employees if the region is viewed as being hostile to workers' rights, write Axios' Emily Peck and Asher Price.

Between the lines: The ranking reflects a continuing tension between business interests and social conservatives.

  • Gov. Greg Abbott has had it both ways, selling Texas as low-regulation and business-friendly even as he has ordered state agencies to investigate the parents of transgender kids for child abuse for pursuing gender-affirming care.
  • Of note: The report gave Abbott a 1 out of 5 for his leadership.

State of play: Out Leadership is highlighting the ever-widening differences between the best and worst states. The good are getting better, while the less friendly are passing more anti-LGBTQ+ laws.

What they're saying: The report argues that "states, cities, and municipalities that are more LGBTQ+ friendly reap the benefits of the brightest minds."

  • "This commitment translates to a more competitive talent pool, increased consumer loyalty, and a better bottom line."

Details: To arrive at the business climate scores, Out Leadership used data across a few categories, including:

  • State laws that impact LGBTQ+ people, like protections for housing, the workplace and foster care.
  • Religious exemption laws that might allow businesses to discriminate against people.
  • The relative difficulty transgender people face in changing gender markers on official documents.
  • The work environment, including incidences of harassment, assault, mistreatment and the overall employment rates and incomes of LGBTQ+ workers.

What we're watching: Texas may slide in future rankings if Republican lawmakers succeed in enacting so-called "Don't Say Gay" legislation in the coming session.

2. πŸ³οΈβ€βš§οΈ Families sue state over abuse investigations

Texas Governor Greg Abbott

Photo: Allison Dinner/AFP via Getty Images

Three Texas families have filed a lawsuit demanding that a court block state investigations against them for supporting their transgender kids with gender-affirming care.

Driving the news: The Texas Supreme Court said last month state agencies could, but were not required to, continue investigating parents for child abuse if they seek gender-affirming care for transgender kids, under a directive Gov. Greg Abbott issued in February, writes Axios' Oriana Gonzalez.

  • Days after the decision, Texas' Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) said it would continue the investigations despite the court saying that Abbott's directive was "nonbinding."

State of play: The families have asked for a temporary restraining order and a preliminary injunction to stop the DFPS investigations into them while the case is tried.

  • They are being represented by the American Civil Liberties Union, Lambda Legal and the ACLU of Texas, along with a Texas-based law firm.

What they're saying: "It is indefensible for any state leader to repeatedly attack trans Texans and weaponize the child welfare system against the loving families of transgender kids and teens," said Adri PΓ©rez, policy and advocacy strategist for the ACLU of Texas.

  • "During this Pride Month, we must take a stand against government leaders that are hellbent on stoking fear, and trying to criminalize transgender young people and their families."

Between the lines: Medical organizations, including the American Psychological Association and the American Medical Association, have condemned Abbott's directive to restrict gender-affirming medical care, saying it could have a detrimental effect on the mental health of transgender youth.

  • Over two-thirds of LGBTQ+ youth have said debates over state laws that target transgender people have negatively impacted their mental health, according to a poll by the Trevor Project, which provides crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to LGBTQ+ youth.

3. 🍽 Charted: Dallasites out to eat

Data: OpenTable; Chart: Erin Davis/Axios Visuals

Dallasites aren't eating out as much now as they were before the pandemic, according to OpenTable data.

What's happening: Dallas' reservation rate is still nearly 12% below the 2019 rate and is well below the statewide rate, which is above pre-pandemic levels.

Yes, but: The data only take into account reservations made through OpenTable, and many Dallas eateries use other booking software.

What's next: Dining out could decline as inflation takes its toll, with 53% of Americans planning to cut back "mostly" on restaurant trips, per a recent CNBC survey.

4. πŸ—ž Burnt ends: Bite-sized news bits

Illustration of the Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge in Dallas, animating on and off the screen.

Traversing the news of our time. Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

🎻 Dallas has transferred the management of its classical radio station, WRR, to KERA after a City Council vote yesterday. (KERA)

πŸ₯ The Arlington home of late Pantera drummer Vinnie Paul has been demolished after it was bought for less than $750,000 in February. (DMN)

πŸ”Ž Fort Worth is paying $35,000 for a company to identify and monitor short-term rentals in the city. The rentals are illegal in residential areas but city officials are studying the issue to consider changing that. (Fort Worth Report)

🐾 McKinney is commissioning a statue of Benji to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the 1974 film, which was partially filmed in the city. (Local Profile)

πŸ’¬ Quote du jour:
"We're going to use this as an opportunity to show we're just like everybody else. We want to raise our child in peace."
β€” Terry Garner after 10 Pride flags were burned outside his family's Corsicana home. (NBC5)

Now hiring: New job openings

πŸ”₯ Hot and fresh local job listings.

  1. Senior Lead Software Engineer, ESG at Navex Global.
  2. Director of Communications at Kum and Go.
  3. Director, Platform Partnerships at Laika.

Want more opportunities? Check out our Job Board.

Hiring? Post a Job.

5. β˜•οΈ One coffee trip to go: Dutch Bros.

A photo of an iced coffee from Dutch Bros.

Large serving of a seriously sweet beverage. Photo: Tasha "Spies Again" Tsiaperas/Axios

The Oregon-based drive-thru coffee chain, Dutch Bros., first opened in North Texas last summer.

  • The business started as a coffee cart in 1992 and now has more than a dozen locations in Dallas-Fort Worth.

Vibe check: Friendly "broistas" suggest drinks based on your taste. Opt for the drive-thru.

What to order: Annihilator β€” a chocolate macadamia nut caffeinated beverage

Where: Dutch Bros. Coffee, 14310 Marsh Lane, Addison.

Cost: $4.45 for a (giant-sized) medium

Six-word review: Better than Starbucks but not swoonworthy.

Our picks:

πŸ˜΅β€πŸ’« Mike is over-caffeinated from all his Dutch Bros. visits.

🐢 Tasha is still scrolling through pictures of all the animals who need brothers.

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