Religious Accommodations Act headed to Governor's desk - - Jackson, MS

Religious Accommodations Act headed to Governor's desk

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

The controversial Religious Accommodations Act is on its way to Governor Phil Bryant's desk. Several human rights groups protested outside the Governor’s mansion Monday night rallying to get the bill vetoed. They aren't alone.

Monday, the Mississippi Manufacturing Association came out against the bill. The group's release specifically listed: Nissan, Toyota and Ingalls Shipbuilding. They are all speaking out in opposition to House Bill 1523.

"It is wrong for you conservative Christians against LGBT community when we all should be loving and accepting of one another," said Blossom Brown. "This is ridiculous."

Blossom Brown is a transgender. She said she's already experienced discrimination in Mississippi, But fears it could be worse if the Governor signs HB 1523 into law.

"Forcing people like me to leave the state for better opportunities," added Brown. "And that's not right. He can't chase us away from our own turf."

The ACLU would prefer to see the bill scrapped. But the director of advocacy and policy thought it was too broad from the start.

"If they want nonprofits to have the same kind of freedom as their church would be... if that's the intent, if it's what you really want, then let's get the bill shaped up so it will look like that," said Erik Fleming, Director of Advocacy and Policy with ACLU of Mississippi.

The Human Rights Campaign president called on Mississippi to stop the bill and stand on the right side of history this time.

"Mississippi needs only to look as far as North Carolina to see how damaging discrimination can be to a state's reputation," noted Chad Griffin.

But the national spotlight has already been on the state as the bill makes its way through the legislative process.

"The damage is done," described HRC Mississippi State Director Rob Hill. "The damage that's been done to LGBT people is perpetuated to this bill."

The Governor's communications director said in a statement today that: "The governor will thoroughly review the bill before making a decision."

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