The LGBTQ organization Presidents in Higher Education has approved, by a vote of the board, a boycott of states that have passed legislation that discriminates against gay and transgender people.
The organization will not hold board or membership meetings in those states or conduct its Leadership Institute training in any state that targets LGBTQ+ people, according to a press release.
LGBTQ Presidents in Higher Education and its subsidiary organization, LGBTQ Leaders in Higher Education, will boycott states whose laws “discriminate against trans youth and their families; prohibit curricula, speeches and library materials on gender identities and sexuality; or ban programs, speeches and library materials on racial discrimination as it exists now and historically.
The states mentioned specifically include Florida and Texas, both of which have recently made national headlines.
In Florida, the controversial bill that critics are calling “Don’t Say Gay” aims to limit discussion of LGBTQ+ issues in K-12 schools, specifically banning classroom instruction on these issues for younger students. In Texas, Governor Greg Abbott has asked state agencies to investigate parents who support transitioning youth, leveraging state resources to sue families to make personal health decisions.
Although Florida and Texas are the only two states mentioned by name, many others have enacted or introduced laws banning trans youth from participating in sports or banning books and other educational materials focusing on gender identity issues. , sexuality and race.
The organization notes that it last met in a boycott-affected state, Florida, in 2013.
“Our small, but rapidly growing organizations will provide no tourism and hospitality business to US states that are silencing students, teachers and parents who want to learn about social justice for people of color and individuals and families. LGBTQ+,” LGBTQ Presidents co-chair Erika A. Endrijonas, president and superintendent of Pasadena City College in California, said in a statement.
Endrijonas added that California state employees are already prohibited from using public funds to travel to certain states based on policies that discriminate against LGBTQ people.