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Newsom Signs Bill to End Travel Ban to Anti-LGBTQ+ States

This ban started in 2017

Earlier this month, California Governor Gavin Newsom signed legislation to end the state’s ban on state-funded travel to states with anti-LGBTQ+ laws.

California started banning official travel to states with laws it viewed as discriminatory against the LGBTQ+ community in 2017, starting with Kansas, Mississippi, North Carolina and Tennessee. The ban has since expanded to include 26 states. LGBTQ+ advocates in the California Assembly said the ban has been effective in raising awareness of anti-LGBTQ+ laws but has had unintended consequences.

"In many instances, the travel ban has inadvertently caused California to isolate its services and citizens in a time when we are leading the nation in ensuring inclusivity and freedom," said Democratic Assemblymember Rick Zbur, the former executive director of the advocacy group Equality California to ABC News. "With nearly 500 anti-LGBTQ bills having been introduced in legislatures nationwide this year alone, now more than ever, we need to reach back into those communities with messages of support, inclusivity and understanding."

The bill passed by the California legislature would end the travel ban for elected officials, state workers and university personnel and instead direct funds into an advertising campaign to bring anti-discrimination messaging to Republican-led red states. While ending the travel ban, the legislation also stipulates that no state employee will be required to visit a state with discriminatory laws on its books.

This article was provided to OSAP by ASAE's Power of Associations and Inroads.

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