NEW ORLEANS — Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal issued an Executive Order on May 19, 2015, titled “Marriage and Conscience Order,” effective immediately, to take the place of the failed House Bill (HB 707) of similar name. In a statement, the Governor’s office said the intent of the order is to “prevent the state from discriminating against persons or entities with deeply held religious beliefs that marriage is between one man and one woman.” The ACLU of Louisiana is strongly opposed to this order, as it was to the original bill.
Far from protecting free practice of religion, the Marriage and Conscience Act instead promotes a particular religious belief ahead of all others, at the expense of the rights of the Louisiana people. Executive Director Marjorie R. Esman said, “This desperate measure is Governor Jindal’s way of imposing his religious beliefs on the state of Louisiana. Of questionable legality, it sends a message of divisiveness and bigotry, while doing nothing to protect religious freedom of any kind.”
The ACLU of Louisiana is committed to preserving the civil liberties of all Louisianians, and is currently exploring all options available in opposition to this misguided Executive Order.