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[Image via David Sims/WENN.]
Not cool, Kansas. Not cool.
A bill that would allow the refusal of same-sex couples has passed the Kansas' House, and has gone to their Senate for a vote.
"No individual or religious entity shall be required by any governmental entity to do any of the following, if it would be contrary to the sincerely held religious beliefs of the individual or religious entity regarding sex or gender: Provide any services, accommodations, advantages, facilities, goods, or privileges; provide counseling, adoption, foster care and other social services; or provide employment or employment benefits, related to, or related to the celebration of, any marriage, domestic partnership, civil union or similar arrangement."
Basically anyone can deny service to a same-sex couple, and face no civil suit as a result! What's even crazier is that if anyone does try to sue, they could have to pay the other side's legal fees!
What's even more ridiculous is that this includes state employees!
Equality Kansas State Chairwoman Sandra Meade has spoken out about the bill's clearly discriminatory nature:
"Kansans across the state are rightly appalled that legislators are spending their efforts to pass yet another piece of legislation that seeks to enshrine discrimination against gay and lesbian people into law."
People should never be denied employment on the basis of sexual orientation, and although a proviso in this would-be law mandates that a manager find an employee to provide services after a same-sex couple is refused, what if one can't be found?
In addition, back in 2011 the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission found that job discrimination of the LGBT community violated Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
Perhaps it's time to finally pass the Employment Non-Discrimination Act so no one can be denied services.
In the time being, we'll have to wait and see if Kansas' Senate passes this bill.