Kansas: Gay rights groups call to have sexual orientation added to law banning discrimination

Illustrated rainbow pride flag on a pink background.

Following the progression of a bill to legalise anti-gay discrimination, gay rights groups are calling for sexual orientation to be added to a Kansas anti-discrimination law.

A bill which would have allowed religious business owners to refuse service to same-sex couples in the state of Kansas, was late in February killed in the state’s Senate, but not before passing in the House.

Following the failure of the bill, Equality Kansas has now called for the change, which would make illegal discrimination against LGBT people in the state.

Currently only discrimination based on race, religion, sex, national origin or family status is prohibited.

The executive director of Equality Kansas, Thomas Witt, said the group hoped to use the momentum gathered against the bill to protect LGBT people under the law.

“People in the [Capitol] are saying they don’t condone discrimination in any form… Well let’s see it.”

He went on to say that discrimination against LGBT people was already rife in the state because they are not protected under the law. He said he could not predict how a similar measure specifically referring to gay people would fare in future.

The Senate committee which killed the measure said it would hear similar bills which came its way in future.