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Louisiana Judge Strikes Down Governor’s Executive Order Protecting LGBTQ State Workers

Today, HRC and Forum for Equality issued the following statements in response to a ruling by Judge Todd Hernandez of the 19th Judicial District Court striking down Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards’ executive order protecting LGBTQ state workers and contractors from discrimination.

“This is a setback with serious consequences for LGBTQ state employees and contractors throughout Louisiana,” said HRC Legal Director Sarah Warbelow. “No one should face unfair and unjust discrimination simply because of who they are or whom they love. Upon appeal, we are hopeful that justice will ultimately prevail and these important non-discrimination protections will be restored.”

“Unfortunately, the LGBT community suffered another setback after today’s ruling. These are protections that are not new: two prior Governors have issued similar orders,”said Forum for Equality Executive Director Sarah Jane Brady. “Forum for Equality is confident that the Governor will continue to fight for the rights of the LGBT community in this state.  It is important at this time to be able to send a message to all people and businesses that Louisiana is moving forward and standing on the right side of history. We look forward to continuing to work towards that goal and fight for the rights of all LGBT citizens in Louisiana.”

Last April, Governor Edwards’ issued the executive order protecting state employees and contractors from discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity.  Attorney General Jeff Landry sued the governor, asking the court to throw out those explicit protections that do not exist under state law.