Brewer: Maybe It's Time for an LGBT Antibias Bill
Arizona governor Jan Brewer says it might be time to extend the state's antidiscrimination law to cover LGBT citizens.
Brewer told Capitol Media Services this week that she "does not believe in discrimination" and added, "We are in the United States of America, and we have great privilege that is afforded to everyone."
Currently the law prohibits discrimination in employment, public accommodations, and housing on the basis of race, color, sex, disability, religion, national origin. Brewer said that the issue of expanding the law should be addressed by the legislature if there is a need.
"Testimony needs to be presented," she said. "Let the representatives of the people who have been elected by the populace of the state of Arizona determine and get it up to the governor."
She said she does think that changing opinion on LGBT people may reduce the need for such legislation.
"That's something we don't see a lot of anymore, because of people's changing patterns of discrimination," she said.
But as The Huffington Post points out, at least one in five LGBT people polled by the Pew Research Center last year reported experiencing unfair treatment by an employer.
After national debate and turmoil earlier this year, Brewer vetoed SB1062, a bill approved by the legislature that would have allowed any business owner to refuse goods or services to anyone by citing religious principles, for instance in refusing to serve LGBT people or members of different faiths. It has been speculated that Brewer vetoed the bill due to backlash by multiple companies with operations in Arizona that rallied against the bill. Dozens of companies with hundreds or even thousands of employees across the state, including AT&T and Apple, voiced their opposition to the legislation.