LA County has banned official travel to Texas and Florida over the states’ attacks on LGBT+ rights.
On Monday (6 April), the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously for the measure, a response to Florida’s ‘Don’t Say Gay’ law and Texas’ assault on care for trans youth.
This motion, added by supervisors Sheila Kuehl and Hilda Solis, called for the suspension of all official trips, but makes exceptions in any case when failing to authorise such a trip “would seriously harm the county’s interests.”
The ban will be in effect for as long as the measures are.
Florida governor Ron DeSantis signed the ‘Don’t Say Gay’ bill, formally called the Parental Rights in Education Bill, on 28 March.
It bans discussion of LGBT+ topics in classrooms by school staff or third parties between kindergarten and third grade. The bill comes into effect on 1 July, 2022.
“The kind of school environment imagined in this legislation is one that is uncomfortable, unsafe, unwelcoming, and toxic for all students and staff alike, particularly those who identify as LGBT+,” the LA County motion reads.
“The implementation of this bill would create an atmosphere that stifles such a culture, and stifles learning itself.”
In Texas, governor Greg Abbott ordered the investigation of gender-affirming treatments provided to transgender youth.
Afraid of being accused of child abuse, many health providers in the state have suspended such treatments.
The motion by Kuehl and Solis says: “The deeply harmful impacts that this order will bring about cannot be overstated.
“Such an order flies in the face of all that we know about best practices when it comes to supporting children and young adults to discover who they are and feel secure in their sense of self.”
Los Angeles County is the latest to stand by LGBT+ communities in Texas and Florida.
On Monday (4 April), New York City mayor Eric Adams told LGBT+ Floridians they’d be welcome in his city.
“Loud. Proud. Still allowed,” a billboard launched by Adam read. “Come to the city where you can say whatever you want,” another reads.