Religious Accommodations Bill debated at the capitol - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

Religious Accommodations Bill debated at the capitol

Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
JACKSON, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

Tuesday, a group of protesters converged on the state capitol, to rally against House Bill 15-23. If passed, they say the bill would allow religious organizations and private companies to openly discriminate against members of the L-G-B-T community.

"Discrimination is something we will not tolerate especially against people and HB 1523 specifically targets L-B-G-T Mississippians," said Human Rights Campaign of Mississippi State Director Rob Hill.

Opponents of the bill say for example it would allow a wedding caterer to refuse service to a gay couple, based on their religious beliefs, or a circuit clerk could deny that same couple a marriage license, circumventing Federal law.

"I think it sets a states ability to decide who they want to serve, who they want to discriminate against," said protester Charlie Osborne. "It's a slippery slope."

If HB 1523 passes it's last hurdle, a Senate vote, many believe Governor Phil Bryant will sign it into law.

"I don't think it's discriminatory," said Governor Phil Bryant earlier this week. "I think it gives some people as I appreciate it, the right to be able to say that's against my religious beliefs and I don't need to carry out that particular task."

In Georgia, a similar bill was vetoed by Governor Nathan Deal this week, after big business threatened to pull out of the state if the bill passed.
These protestors believe it's also a violation of church and state.

"I do believe that religious beliefs should be at home with you because they're personal and they are a personal choice," said Christina Fingerle.

This bill has passed a House vote, it's on the calendar for a vote in the Senate by Wednesday evening.

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