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Epilogue.1: Religious Freedom

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    68348
  • The Religious Freedom Restoration Act was signed into federal law in 1993 to protect diverse religious freedoms from government intrusion. By 2014, states had started introducing similar laws in an attempt to curtail freedoms provided to gay and lesbian people through federal recognition of same-sex marriages. In 2014, the Arizona legislature passed a religious freedom bill that was ultimately vetoed amid a wave of protest. From 2015 to 2017, over 20 state legislatures introduced religious freedom bills. Two states passed religious freedom bills that permitted discrimination against gay and lesbian couples in fostering or adopting children, while two others addressed religious freedom in schools and counseling. Mississippi and Indiana passed broader versions of the bill, but Indiana, in reaction to protests, added an amend- ment protecting LGBTQ people from discrimination. In 2019, Texas passed SB1978 which protects companies that donate to anti-LGBTQ groups from any adverse action from the state government.

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