Metro Weekly

Connecticut to boycott Indiana over anti-LGBT religious freedom law

Dan Malloy - Credit: Official portrait

Dan Malloy – Credit: Official portrait

Connecticut will become the first state to boycott Indiana after the signing of a religious freedom bill last week that opens to the door to discrimination against LGBT people.

Gov. Dan Malloy (D) announced on Twitter that he will sign an executive order Monday prohibiting state-funded travel to Indiana. 

The executive order, which takes effect immediately, directs all agencies, departments, boards and commissions, the University of Connecticut and the Board of Regents immediately review all requests for state-funded or state-sponsored travel to states that have enacted legislation to protect religious freedom but do not prohibit discrimination for classes of citizens. Under the order, publicly funded travel to such states is prohibited unless necessary for the enforcement of state law, to meet contractual obligations or for the protection of public health, welfare and safety.

“We cannot sit idly by and do nothing while laws are enacted that will turn back the clock,” Malloy said in a statement. “We need to keep moving forward and stand up against forces that seek to roll back progress. I’m sending a clear message with this executive order: Discrimination can’t and won’t be tolerated by the State of Connecticut. Nearly two decades ago, Connecticut was among the first states that passed a comprehensive anti-discrimination law concerning sexual orientation, and three years ago I enthusiastically signed a law adding gender identity and expression to those statutes. We need to do what we can to stand up and act against laws that allow – as a matter of public policy – individuals to be discriminated against. It’s unacceptable, and today, Connecticut has acted.”

On Thursday, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence (R) signed the Religious Freedom Restoration Act into law, sparking national outrage from politicians and corporate America alike. Advocates argue the new law will allow business owners to discriminate against LGBT people by citing their religious beliefs. 

The White House voiced concerns Friday about the law, as did former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Apple CEO Tim Cook wrote Sunday in The Washington Post that there is a wave of legislation in more than two dozen states that would allow discrimination. “There’s something very dangerous happening in states across the country,” Cook wrote.

Connecticut Executive Order

Editor’s note: This article has been updated with details about the executive order.

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Justin Snow is Metro Weekly's former political editor and White House correspondent. Follow him on Twitter @JustinCSnow.

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