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PostSubject: Groups to rally against Mississippi religious freedom bill   Tue Apr 05, 2016 12:31 am

The Human Rights Campaign (HRC), ACLU of Mississippi and LGBT equality advocates, including Blossom Brown, will hold a press conference outside the Mississippi State Capitol where they will urge House Speaker Philip Gunn not to bring House Bill 1523 up for a final vote Monday night.

The groups believe the bill would allow individuals, religious organizations and private associations to use religion to discriminate against LGBT Mississippians. The press conference is scheduled for 11:30 a.m.

At 5:30 p.m. Monday, after the Houseís expected vote, HRC, ACLU of Mississippi, the Southern Poverty Law Center, Planned Parenthood Southeast as well as LGBT people, families and allies from across the state, will gather once again at the governorís mansion for a rally against HB 1523.

House Bill 1523, authored by Speaker Philip Gunn, R-Clinton, would allow business and government workers to deny services based on religious beliefs. Ten states have passed or are considering bills in response to last year's U.S. Supreme Court decision legalizing gay marriage nationwide. North Carolina's governor and Legislature recently approved a similar law. In Georgia, Republican Gov. Nathan Deal on Monday vetoed one passed by the Legislature after protests from businesses.

The state House voted 68-44 on Friday to send the "Protecting Freedom of Conscience from Government Discrimination Act" to Gov. Phil Bryant, who has not said whether he would sign it into law.
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Groups to rally against Mississippi religious freedom bill

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