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Arizona Rated Worst State to Live In By CNBC Social Justice Metric

July 20, 2022

By Corinne Murdock |

Arizona was ranked the worst state to live in based on its quality of life and inclusivity scoring by one of the biggest news outlets in the country. Its weaknesses that gave it the bottom ranking were air quality, health resources, inclusiveness, and crime — earning it a “Life, Health, & Inclusion Score” of 67 out of 325 possible points. 

As CNBC explained, the metric focused mainly on social justice issues:

Combine an era of enhanced social consciousness with a growing worker shortage, and it explains why, now more than ever, companies are demanding that states offer a welcoming and inclusive environment for employees. We rate the states on livability factors like per capita crime rates and environmental quality. We look at inclusiveness in state laws, including protections against discrimination of all kinds, as well as voting rights. While the pandemic may be past the crisis stage, health care quality, outcomes, preparedness and public health spending remain in the spotlight. All are key drivers in this category.

Part of the inclusivity scoring likely came from GLSEN — a national organization pushing LGBTQ+ ideologies onto minors through schools and communities — as well as the Brennan Center for Justice, Lumina Foundation, and National Education Association. CNBC relied on them as a source.

However, Arizona did rank within the top 10 states for several other categories. The state ranked fourth in business friendliness, sixth in infrastructure, and seventh in workforce. 

CNBC published the ranking last week as part of their overall data from their annual “America’s Top States for Business” listing. The rankings were based on six different scoring criteria, weighted based on how frequently states use them as a selling point for economic development marketing materials: workforce, 410 points (16 percent); infrastructure, 380 points (15 percent); cost of doing business, 345 points (14 percent); economy, 325 points, 13 percent); life, health, & inclusion, 325 points (13 percent); technology & innovation, 250 points (10 percent), business friendliness, 200 points (8 percent); education, 165 points (7 percent); access to capital, 50 points (2 percent), and cost of living, 50 points (2 percent). 

The other 9 of the 10 worst states to live in based on the Life, Health, & Inclusion Score were, in order: Texas, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Missouri, Louisiana, New Mexico, Indiana, Tennessee, and Nevada.

The outlet ranked the following as the top 10 states to live in based on their Life, Health, & Inclusion Score, in order: Vermont, Maine, Hawaii, North Dakota, Minnesota, Washington, Nebraska, Oregon, New Jersey, and Iowa. 

With all factors considered, Arizona ranked 34th. The top ten states for business with all factors included were, in order: North Carolina, Washington, Virginia, Colorado, Texas, Tennessee, Nebraska, Utah, Minnesota, and Georgia. 

Corinne Murdock is a reporter for AZ Free News. Follow her latest on Twitter, or email tips to corinne@azfreenews.com.

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