Printer Icon

Georgia Bill Attacking LGBT & Minorities Passes Through Senate

By The Human Rights Campaign - 2015-03-12

Summary

Legal experts from across the political spectrum agree that this bill could open the door for discrimination.

"Legal experts from across the political spectrum agree that this bill could open the door for discrimination"

Main Document

A vote of 37-15, the Georgia Senate passed a bill allowing people to use their religion to challenge or opt out of various laws - including local laws in Atlanta and other cities - that protect LGBT people and other minorities from discrimination in employment, housing, and public accommodations.

In practical terms, S.B. 129 could allow businesses to refuse service to same-sex couples, a paramedic to refuse to provide life-saving services to an LGBT person, or a school counselor to refuse services to an LGBT teenager. The bill puts minority groups at risk of being denied service everywhere from the convenience store to the doctor’s office.

“This bill is a reprehensible attack on LGBT people and their families in Georgia,” said HRC National Field Director Marty Rouse. “It does not address any legitimate problem with current law and creates harmful consequences for businesses throughout the state. It threatens not just the LGBT community, but women, members of minority faiths and other minority classes. All Georgians deserve to be treated with dignity and respect, and we need all fair-minded people in the state to help stop this bill.”

"It's disappointing that the Senate voted for such a divisive and unneeded piece of legislation,” said Georgia Equality Executive Director Jeff Graham. “Legal experts from across the political spectrum agree that this bill could open the door for discrimination. And if this is not about creating a license to discriminate, why would they work so hard to prevent language that would clarify that from being added to the bill. The actions today will have a chilling effect on Georgia's reputation and send a message of intolerance to the next generation."

Georgia Unites Against Discrimination, a joint project of HRC and Georgia Equality, has been actively working to stop this bill since it was filed and continues to have grave concerns about its impact on LGBT Georgians, the Georgia economy, and other minorities groups. A companion bill has been filed in the Georgia House of Representatives and referred to the House Judiciary Committee but has not yet received a hearing. The Georgia legislative session ends on April 2.

The Human Rights Campaign is America’s largest civil rights organization working to achieve lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender equality. HRC envisions a world where LGBT people are embraced as full members of society at home, at work and in every community.

Georgia Equality is an organization working to advance fairness, safety and opportunity for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender communities and our allies throughout the state.

Georgia Unites Against Discrimination is a bipartisan grassroots campaign dedicated to protecting gay and transgender Georgians from discrimination and ensuring that individuals and businesses aren’t able to use their religious beliefs to harm others.

Discuss: Do you agree, disagree, or want to add an opinion on this topic - Click Here to comment and/or discuss.

Related Information



Albuquerque Ranked Top Place for Gender Equality - U.S. metros ranked by how far women have come to achieving gender equality with regard to owning a home, attending college and getting paid.


Call on Trump Administration to Reinstate Sexual Orientation Question in National Senior Survey - HRC criticizes Trump Administration for removing question about sexual orientation from National Survey of Older Americans Act Participants (NSOAAP).


HRC Condemns Ben Carson as Secretary of Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) - Outspoken opponent of LGBTQ equality, Carson will oversee enforcement of fair housing laws and programs that provide crucial assisted and public housing.


Those Sensitive to Sexual Disgust More Likely To Be Kantian - According to a recent study in moral cognition, individuals who are sensitive to sexual disgust are more likely to make duty based moral judgements.


MiFo LGBT Film Festival Renamed The OUTshine Film Festival - The MiFo LGBT Film Festival is undergoing a full rebrand and is now called The OUTshine Film Festival.


Choosing a Man - Are Looks More Important Than Personality - Mothers and their daughters choose potential partners with a minimal level of attractiveness, irrespective of their personality.


Cite This Document