Senate Passes “Religious Freedom” Bill, Critics Call It “Religious Discrimination”

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The so-called “Religious Freedom” legislation takes another step today in the Indiana General Assembly.

The senate approved the bill today on a 40 to 10 party line vote.

The legislation is intended to protect religious business owners who don’t want to provide services for same-sex weddings.

Critics however say the measure discriminates gay couples.

The bill now moves to the house.

National Director of Lambda Legal’s Law and Policy Project Jennifer Pizer issued a statement urging the Indiana House of Representatives to vote ‘no’ Senate Bill 101.

“We are extremely disappointed that Indiana’s Senate voted to allow religious discrimination in many areas of life for Indiana’s families, workers and others. We have seen this over and over – bills that say they are about protecting one thing when the real goal is to target and discriminate against LGBT people, with vast implications for everyone else. 

As written, this bill will upend the balance between religious freedom and freedom from imposition of others’ religious beliefs. Lambda Legal urges the Indiana House to halt this bill before causes damage and legal havoc between neighbors, employee and employer, and landlord and tenant. SB 101 extends religious exercise rights to for-profit companies of all sizes – no matter what goods they make or services they sell, they’re treated much like churches. Freedom of religion is already protected by federal and state law, but this bill goes too far.”

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