California bans state travel to Idaho over transgender sports restrictions, birth certificate law

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SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Attorney General Xavier Becerra on Monday extended California’s ban on taxpayer-funded trips to a 12th state, adding Idaho to the list based on the state’s passage of two laws limiting the state’s acknowledgment of gender preferences.

Becerra’s order means public employees and college students may not travel to events in Idaho under provisions of a 2016 California law.

One of the northern state’s new laws, titled the “Fairness in Women’s Sports Act,” bans transgender girls and women from participating in girls’ and women’s school sports. The law runs counter to guidance National Collegiate Athletic Association guidance, according to a news release from Becerra’s office.

The other Idaho law prohibits amending birth certificates to match a person’s gender identity.

The laws, which Idaho Gov. Brad Little signed in March, go into effect July 1, according to the news release.

“Where states legislate discrimination, California unambiguously speaks out,” Becerra said in a news release. “The state of Idaho has taken drastic steps to undermine the rights of the transgender community, preventing people from playing sports in school or having documentation that reflects their identity. Let’s not beat around the bush: these laws are plain and simple discrimination.”

Little’s office didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

The California travel law, Assembly Bill 1887, was crafted as a response to so-called religious freedom laws. Its supporters say it withholds California taxpayer money from certain states, and keeps public employees out of situations where they might feel uncomfortable. There are exemptions for law enforcement and tax collection.

The law also forbids public colleges from participating in events on the no-travel list, although athletic programs have continued to attend games they’ve scheduled and other postseason events in states subject to the ban.

The other states to which California has banned state-funded travel are Alabama, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee and Texas.


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