The state of California is adding 5 states to its travel ban list.
But this travel ban has nothing to do with COVID-19.
This ban on state-funded travel is over “Anti-LGBTQ” legislation passed in other states.
In particular, legislation focused on not allowing biological males from entering ladies bathrooms or playing female sports.
If your state protects female children by preventing potential male sex offenders “identifying” as females to enter the bathroom, then California forbids travel to your state.
If your state protects women’s rights by preventing biological males from having a competitive advantage in female sports, then California wants none of its state officials in your state.
The 5 states that made the California ban list were Florida, Arkansas, Montana, North Dakota, and West Virginia.
California now bans state-funded travel to 17 different states.
California is adding Florida and four other states to its official travel ban list after Attorney General Rob Bonta said today the states passed anti-LGBTQ laws that are “directly targeting transgender youth.” https://t.co/cKUCfl9xEL
— POLITICO (@politico) June 28, 2021
When I saw this headline I thought it must be because of the Delta strain but no, it’s because of…. LGBT laws 🤨https://t.co/xZ8p9Yv9F2
— Claire Lehmann (@clairlemon) June 29, 2021
Is that a threat or a promise?😏https://t.co/OsHhG2YmaN
— Steve Daines (@SteveDaines) June 28, 2021
— ABC7 Eyewitness News (@ABC7) June 28, 2021
NEW: California has banned state-funded travel to 5 more states with discriminatory LGBTQ laws:
– North Dakota
– W. Virginia
That brings the total number of banned states to 17.https://t.co/On7CN5IijM
— Axios (@axios) June 28, 2021
The New York Post reported:
California officials have added Florida and four other states to a list of places where state-funded travel is banned over laws that purportedly discriminate against LGBTQ individuals.
State Attorney General Rob Bonta, a Democrat, announced Monday that Arkansas, Montana, North Dakota and West Virginia had joined Alabama, Idaho, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee and Texas on the no-go list, which was first created in 2016.
“When states discriminate against LGBTQ+ Americans, California law requires our office to take action,” Bonta said in a statement. “These new additions to the state-funded travel restrictions list are about exactly that … Rather than focusing on solving real issues, some politicians think it’s in their best interest to demonize trans youth and block life-saving care.
“Make no mistake,” Bonta added. “We’re in the midst of an unprecedented wave of bigotry and discrimination in this country — and the State of California is not going to support it.”
Bonta’s office cited laws enacted in Arkansas, Florida, Montana and West Virginia that bar transgender females from participating in girls’ school sports. North Dakota made the list due to a law that permits certain publicly funded student organizations to prevent LGBT students from joining without losing funding.
The California AG’s office also cited two other Arkansas laws. One allows medical providers to deny care to LGBTQ people if they have a “conscientious objection” to doing so, while the other prohibits gender-confirming treatments or surgery for transgender youths. The latter law was passed by the state legislature earlier this year, overriding the veto of Republican Gov. Asa Hutchinson.
The new state travel bans go into effect July 1 for Florida and Montana, July 8 for West Virginia, July 29 for Arkansas, and Aug. 1 for North Dakota.
Five years ago, California prohibited most taxpayer-funded travel to states deemed to have passed laws that discriminate against LGBTQ people. Assembly Bill 1887 was prompted by outrage in California over a North Carolina law that required people to use public bathrooms based on the sex shown on their birth certificate.
Before Bonta’s announcement Monday, 12 other states were already on the California ban list: Alabama, Idaho, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee and Texas. The law has limited exemptions, such as travel necessary to enforce California laws, participate in litigation or protect public health. College teams have used private funds to continue traveling to banned states for athletic competition.
The Human Rights Campaign, one of the nation’s largest LGBTQ advocacy groups, says that 2021 has been a record-breaking year for anti-LGBTQ and anti-transgender legislation proposed in more than a dozen states. The organization says it has tracked at least 117 bills introduced in the current legislative session that target the transgender community.
“Unfortunately we are seeing a rash of new laws, put on the books in different states” that aim to restrict transgender youth from participating on sports teams or from using bathrooms of their choice, Bonta noted. Such laws are “not consistent with our values,’’ Bonta said, “and we will not spend our state money to send state employees to those states.”
California in 2017 banned state-funded travel to Texas after the nation’s second most-populous state allowed agencies to reject adoptions by LGBTQ couples based on religious reasons.
Texas in 2020 asked the U.S. Supreme Court to block California’s law. “Boycotting states based on nothing more than political disagreement breaks down the ability of states to serve as laboratories of democracy while still working together as one nation — the very thing our Constitution intended to prevent,” state Attorney General Ken Paxton wrote last year. But the high court in April denied Texas’ request.
“It’s important for our state to send a strong message,” Assemblymember Evan Low (D-Campbell), chair of the California Legislative LGBTQ Caucus, said on Monday. He said that the list’s expansion also sends a message to state workers that they will not be required to travel to states discriminating against LGBTQ and trans youth, and where “our opponents are motivated by fear and hate.”