Augusta Free Press

Bill allowing discrimination against LGBT passes Senate committee

The Senate Committee on General Laws and Technology voted Monday to advance a bill that would effectively sanction a form of LGBT discrimination.

Grayson Republican Sen. Bill Carrico’s SB 41 would entitle religious organizations and affiliated businesses to refuse to provide services or goods in connection with a marriage solemnization “if the action would cause the [actor] to violate a sincerely held religious belief.”

Said Sen. Mamie Locke (D – Hampton), “All Virginians deserve to be treated equally. This bill sanctions prejudice and discrimination. Enacting it would be a grave mistake.”

Said Sen. Adam Ebbin (D – Alexandria), “Marriage equality is the law of the land, but SB 41 seeks to foster unfair discrimination. We should be fighting to end that discrimination — not working to protect it under the false guise of religious freedom.”

SB 41 was opposed in committee by — among others — the ACLU of Virginia, Equality Virginia, and the Virginia state conference of the NAACP.