ST PETERSBURG -- With Vice Presidential candidate Mike Pence in Sarasota , LGBTQ advocates and leaders will gather to decry the Trump-Pence campaign’s anti-LGBTQ platform and record. LGBTQ advocates will remind Pence that thanks to anti-LGBTQ lawmakers, those who survived the Pulse tragedy in Orlando -- which left 49 people, almost all LGBTQ and Latinx, dead -- are at risk for being fired or denied a job simply because of who they are. The events will take place at , WEDNESDAY AUG. 31 in Sarasota.
Pence became a national disgrace in 2015, for his “license to discriminate” bill that could have allowed businesses to deny service to LGBTQ people -- and for subsequently defending the bill after an outcry from the business community and a majority of Hoosier voters. In a now notorious interview with ABC last year, Pence refused to answer eight separate times when asked whether businesses should be able to discriminate against LGBTQ people.
Pence’s discriminatory bill had enormous consequences for the business and economic health of Indiana after a flood of companies spoke out against the measure. Indianapolis’s nonprofit tourism agency estimated that in their city alone, Pence’s anti-LGBTQ bill cost up to 12 conventions and $60 million in lost revenue. Polling conducted by HRC after the 2015 fight found that 75 percent of Hoosiers said the debate was bad for the state’s economy and 70 percent of those surveyed said they opposed the law.
Pence has also opposed funding to treat HIV unless it was offset by cuts to programs that he claimed "...celebrate and encourage the types of behaviors that facilitate the spreading of the HIV virus." Pence instead preferred funding harmful conversion therapy programs that would seek to change "sexual behavior.”
In Congress, Pence opposed the repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, and he opposed a bill that would prohibit the most basic discrimination protections against LGBTQ people in the workplace.
Sarasota: Peaceful protest
- WHAT: LGBTQ Activists Protest Mike Pence’s Visit
- WHEN: , , Wednesday, Aug. 31st
- WHO: LGBTQ leaders and community members
- WHERE: Across the street from the Hyatt Regency, 1000 Boulevard of the Arts, Sarasota, FL 34236
- WHY: Mike Pence’s policies and rhetoric makes the world less safe for LGBTQ people. In the wake of the Pulse nightclub shooting -- the nation’s deadliest mass shooting by a single shooter, LGBTQ advocates will highlight the impact of anti-LGBTQ speech and policies fueling the fires of hateful actions and horrific violence.
Organizational Participants Include:
Equality Florida, Human Rights Campaign, Stonewall Democrats