Providence mayor bans employee travel to N.C., Miss. following controversial laws

(Photo Courtesy: WPRI)

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Providence Mayor Jorge Elorza said Friday he will ban nonessential travel to North Carolina and Mississippi after the governors in those states signed laws that critics say discriminate against the lesbian, gay bisexual and transgender community.

Elorza acknowledged the travel restrictions are largely symbolic, but said he believes it’s the right thing to do.

North Carolina faced instant backlash after Gov. Pat McCrory signed a law that excludes sexual identity from the state’s anti-discrimination law. The state also requires transgender people to use public bathrooms that match the sex on their birth certificate.

The Mississippi law allows religious groups and some businesses to deny services to gay couples.

Several states and municipalities, including New York, Vermont, Seattle and Boston, have already issued employee travel bans to those states.

Gov. Gina Raimondo said this week she isn’t planning to restrict travel.

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