Gov. Cuomo bans state travel to Mississippi

Posted at 7:57 AM, Apr 06, 2016
and last updated 2016-04-06 11:38:19-04

This comes in response to a bill signed into law Tuesday by Mississippi Governor Phillip Brant that allows business and groups to deny services to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender residents if they believe that the LGBT lifestyle violates their religious beliefs.

Governor Cuomo called the controversial "Religious Freedom Law" "discriminatory"  because it allows those businesses and groups to refuse service to people based on their sexual orientation or gender identity.

“Discrimination is not a New York value. We believe our diversity is our greatest strength, and we will continue to reject the politics of division and exclusion,” said Governor Cuomo. “This Mississippi law is a sad, hateful injustice against the LGBT community, and I will not allow any non-essential official travel to that state until it is repealed.”

The executive order is effective immediately and applies to all non-essential state travel to Mississippi. That means all New York State agencies, departments, boards, and commissions must immediately review all requests for state-funded or state-sponsored travel to Mississippi, and bar any of those trips that are not essential to the enforcement of state law or public health and safety.
Last month, Governor Cuomo also banned non-essential state travel to North Carolina, following that state’s enactment of a law which bars transgender individuals from using restrooms appropriate for their gender identities.

In 2015, Governor Cuomo banned non-essential state travel to the state of Indiana after that state’s legislature passed a controversial religious freedom measure that did not prohibit discrimination against LGBT citizens. The Indiana measure was later amended to prevent it from being used to discriminate against LGBT residents and travelers in Indiana, and that travel ban was lifted.