April 6, 2016

Santa Fe bans most travel to NC, MS over anti-LGBT laws

Santa Fe mayor Javier Gonzales.

The city of Santa Fe banned most official travel to Mississippi and North Carolina in the wake of the passage of laws targeting LGBT residents.

Santa Fe mayor Javier Gonzales.

Santa Fe mayor Javier Gonzales.

Mayor Javier Gonzales linked to a story about Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant signing a law that allows many to reject services for same-sex couples on religious grounds.

“Santa Fe will continue the policy of banning all non-essential travel to States that pass hateful legislation that promotes discrimination,” Gonzales wrote.

Gonzales is the first openly gay mayor of Santa Fe.

The Santa Fe New Mexican first reported on the news.

North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory signed a law that requires people to use bathrooms in schools and public facilities that match the gender listed on their birth certificate. The law was aimed at overturning a city ordinance in Charlotte that banned discrimination against LGBT people.

The North Carolina Legislature passed the bill in a special session that was called just for the one issue. Despite calls by advocates, McRory signed the legislation.

Legislation similar to the Mississippi legislation was introduced this year in New Mexico during the legislative session. The bill , dubbed a religious liberty bill, never was heard in committee as Gov. Susana Martinez did not put it on the call.

Santa Fe is not alone. A number of cities, including San Francisco and Atlanta, banned official travel to North Carolina. The states of Vermont, Washington and New York all banned official travel to Mississippi.

The business community has also taken action. The New York Times wrote about the backlash the two states are facing after adopting the controversial laws.

The Times reported that Indiana lost an estimated $60 million because of the passage of a law similar to the one in Mississippi.

PayPal announced that they would no longer place the company’s global operations center in North Carolina because of the law. That facility was promised to bring 400 jobs to the state.