In a setback for LGBTQ advocates, the Supreme Court on Monday declined to hear two cases challenging a Mississippi law that allows businesses and government employees to deny services because of their religious beliefs to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender individuals.
The court’s decision allows the current law, known as HB 1523, to stand. HB 1523 states that the Mississippi government will not engage in any discriminatory action against persons who do not believe in gay marriage, homosexuality and transgenderism.
According to The Hill, LGBTQ rights groups have described the law as the “worst in the nation” and called the Supreme Court’s decision a “missed opportunity.”
“The Court’s inaction today means that LGBTQ Mississipians will continue to face harassment and discrimination,” Masen Davis, CEO of Freedom for All Americans, said in a statement.
“HB 1523 fails to honor the tradition of religious freedom in America — instead, it allows people to use religion as a license to discriminate,” Davis said. “The LGBTQ community remains in harm’s way every single day that this law is in effect, and we are committed to working with our legal partners to strike this draconian measure once and for all.”