Los Angeles County has barred official travel to Florida over the state’s so-called “Don’t Say Gay” law — but Sunshine State officials are calling the “woke” move California’s loss.
The LA County Board of Supervisors voted this week to bar staffers from traveling to Florida unless it would “seriously harm the county’s interests.”
The action comes in response to a new Florida law that prohibits sexual orientation and gender identity instruction for kids in kindergarten through the third grade.
Critics say the measure is hostile to the LGBTQ community and have dubbed it the “Don’t Say Gay” law.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis argues that the legislation aims to shield children from age-inappropriate subject matter.
DeSantis spokesperson Christina Pushaw ripped the travel ban Thursday.
“The woke bureaucrats running LA County are shooting themselves in the foot with their political grandstanding,” she said. “This misguided policy is a punishment for LA County employees – not for Florida.”
Pushaw argued that her state’s tourism has boomed of late due to mounting dissatisfaction in other areas of the country.
“Many of the tourists in Florida have visited us from states with mandates and restrictions, like California, to enjoy the freedoms and normalcy that Florida has become renowned for under Gov. DeSantis’ leadership,” she said. “These are things that everyone can appreciate, regardless of their gender or sexual orientation.”
The LA motion — sponsored by Supervisors Sheila Kuehl and Hilda Solis — asserts that Florida’s legislation will promote mistreatment of LGBTQ students.
“Schools should be spaced that foster open discussion, critical thinking, meaningful engagement and the safe exploration of ideas,” they wrote. “The implementation of this bill would create an atmosphere that stifled such a culture and stifles learning itself.”
The board also banned official travel to Texas this week after the state controversially categorized some transgender-related medical procedures for minors as child abuse.
That approach, the motion said, impedes the ability of children to “discover who they are and feel secure in their sense of self.”
“This order is discriminatory, harmful and just plain cruel,” Solis and Kuehl wrote.
The travel bans to Florida and Texas do not apply to private citizens.