A second mayor has now prohibited their city employees from traveling to Indiana using taxpayer money. In Seattle, Mayor Ed Murray has made an announcement that he is stopping the use of city money, to pay for any city employees heading to Indiana. The move is the second in as many days by a mayor to prevent travel based on a bill being called discriminatory in practice.
In San Francisco, Mayor Ed Lee, also made the decision to prohibit the use of taxpayer money to fund travel expenses between the city and the state of Indiana. Lee made the call after the Religious Freedom Bill was signed into law by Governor Mike Pence on Thursday. Many critics of the law are calling it a legalized ability to discriminate, as now businesses can turn customers away on the basis of religious beliefs.
Indiana has truly come under fire since the bill was signed on Thursday morning. Not only have companies and businesses begun making their feelings on the law clear, by pulling business out of the state and stopping planned expansion, but a number of celebrities have also spoken out against the law. Boycotts of the state have started and protestors have already begun getting their voices heard after gathering in the streets of Indianapolis.
Both San Francisco Mayor Lee and Seattle Mayor Murray have called the bill out for being discriminatory and in their statements prohibiting city paid travel to Indiana, the mayors said that their cities were places of tolerance and acceptance. Lee said that his city stood united against discrimination, while Murray spoke about Seattle being a place of equality. In fact, Murray said that there is no place for discrimination within the city of Seattle and that was simply a beginners course in equality.
In Murray’s statement on Saturday, he said that he would be signing an executive order in the coming week that would ban any city employees from work-related travel to Indiana. He felt that it was not appropriate to use tax payer money to travel to a place that would openly allow discriminatory practices. Murray also addressed the people of Indiana. He said that his city of Seattle, stood with the people of Indiana, who are out their fighting for equality, hoping to protect the civil rights of all the people living in the state.
Murray even took to Twitter to deliver his message to his followers. In his Tweet to his people, he again expressed that no workers in Seattle would be using taxpayer funds to travel to the state. He called the Religious Freedom Bill discriminatory and even added in #LGBT.
Murray is now the second mayor to prohibit taxpayer funded travel to the state of Indiana, since the Religious Freedoms Bill was signed by Governor Pence on Thursday morning. Since the signing, many have spoken out against the bill and what it allows business owners to do in the name of religion. Some of the people who have spoken out include, Yelp CEO Jeremy Stoppelman, Hilary Clinton, Miley Cyrus, George Takei and other big name individuals.
By Kimberley Spinney
Photo by Ronald Woan – Flickr License