OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) — Several Republican lawmakers filed a bill Thursday seeking an exemption to the state's anti-discrimination laws just weeks after legal action was taken against a Richland florist who denied service to a gay couple for their upcoming wedding.
The bill introduced by Sen. Sharon Brown, R-Kennewick, would allow businesses the right to deny services or goods if they felt doing so was contrary to their "sincerely held religious beliefs, philosophical beliefs, or matters of conscience."
The measure would not apply to the denial of services to people under a protected class under federal law, such as race, religion or disability.
Brown said the measure seeks to protect people or religious organizations from legal persecution. "There's a glaring lack of protection for religion in state law," she said.
This is a local story that many of my friends have been talking about. What do you think of the bill introduced by Sen. Brown?