TIME California

California Bill Would Ban Government Travel to States Deemed Anti-Gay

Indianapolis Reacts To Indiana's Controversial Religious Freedom Act
Aaron P. Bernstein/Getty Images Demonstrator JD Ford speaks outside the City County Building on March 30, 2015 in Indianapolis, Indiana, calling on the state house to roll back the controversial Religious Freedom Restoration Act.

The law targets Indiana's Religious Freedom Restoration Act

A California lawmaker has introduced a bill that would ban government-funded travel to states with laws that he says discriminate on sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression.

“No one wants to send employees into an environment where they would be uncomfortable,” said Democrat Evan Low, Jon Ortiz, a reporter for the Sacramento Bee, reported this week.

Low said he decided to introduce the bill after Indiana signed the Religious Freedom Restoration Act into law in March 2015. Touted as a law that protects religious liberty, critics say it gives businesses or employers legal grounds to treat people differently based on a religious opposition to homosexuality. The National Conference of State Legislatures found that a total of 21 states have enacted similar religious freedom laws since 1993.

Indiana’s law prompted companies and public figures to declare a boycott on the state, and some governors and mayors said they would sign executive orders banning state-funded travel to Indiana.

Low said he doesn’t know which states his bill would apply to yet. He said it would not cover lawmakers and political trips but would affect administrative travel.

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