Arkansas governor, Asa Hutchinson, signed into law on Friday a bill allowing medical workers refuse treatment to patients because of religious or moral objections...
A move said to provide the powers to turn away LGBTQ+ patients.
Which for many, is a huge step in the wrong direction. Scroll on for all the details on exactly what the bill means...
Now, it all started in 1969 when Gay Pride was born in New York...
And amazingly so, the movement is showing no signs of slowing down today.
We've come such a long way.
Here in the States, the LGBTQ+ community is bigger and prouder than ever before.
In Congress, we even have a number of openly-gay and trans congressmen and women...
And, in 2015, the Supreme Court ruled same-sex marriage as a legal right across the country.
Obviously, this was a landmark moment in the community's fight for equality.
Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote that the plaintiffs asked: "for equal dignity in the eyes of the law; the Constitution grants them that right."
Fast forward 6 years, and the community is thriving...
So much so that it is bigger than ever before.
And, according to a recent poll...
A record number of Americans identify as LGBTQ+.
As stated earlier, a new Gallup report has produced some interesting findings on how the youth of America identify...
54.6 percent identified as bisexual, 24.5 percent as gay, 11.7 percent as lesbians, 11.3 percent as transgender, and 3.3 percent said they used another term to describe their identity.
Pretty remarkable, right?
Well, alongside the happiness and positivity comes, of course, the negativity and the hate.
It's terribly sad that there are still so many people out there who hold ignorant and old-fashioned ideologies towards the LGBTQ+ community...
And many of these individuals refuse to accept people for who they truly are.
Undoubtedly, there's huge room for improvement...
As the state of Arkansas has proven.
Last week, Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson signed into law a legislation allowing doctors to refuse to treat someone because of religious or moral objections.
And people are outraged...
That is sooooo disgusting..!— Emma M M (@EmmaMM26269149) March 28, 2021
The Sexual preference and life choices of any person, are the right of that individual Only..
Every person deserves access to medical treatment when required..
The Only person who can refuse treatment, is the person actually requiring treatment..!
Ummmm... so the Governor is basically authorizing medical malpractice, right? I mean if a refusal of service in case of an health emergency should lead to a malpractice lawsuit, right? Besides asking invasive personal questions to determine said lack of service.— John Merced (@darkph0enix1) March 27, 2021
How is it that the United States can be both a really progressive country and one of the most backwards countries at the same time?— Mr. K (@dankramar) March 28, 2021
They can sign any bill they want but I'm guessing 99% of ethical medical workers will do their jobs to the same high standard that they always do. Thank goodness hospitals aren't staffed with Republican senators, we'd all be dead.— Yvonne (@AlwaysYvonneMac) March 26, 2021
And sadly the gigantic leap backwards continues. When a state signs these horrific bills they need to suffer financially as that’s the only thing they understand.— Bass Player (@milhaus64) March 26, 2021
Doesn't that violate numerous Federal laws?— Rusty Katt (@rusty_katt) March 26, 2021
Any healthcare worker - physician, nurse, tech, PA, ward clerk etc. who would agree to deny healthcare to anybody for whatever reason has zero business being in healthcare.— Jeffrey Swisher, MD (@jeffreyswisher) March 27, 2021
So if they go to hospital as they’re having a heart attack, the Doctor can refuse to treat them?— MissLucy (@MissLucy_2011) March 27, 2021
The Doctor can just let them die?
Surely, that’s a breach of your medical license.
The bill allows health care workers and institutions to not participate in non-emergency treatments that violate their conscience.
In a statement, Hutchinson said: "I support this right of conscience so long as emergency care is exempted and conscience objection cannot be used to deny general health service to any class of people.
"Most importantly, the federal laws that prohibit discrimination on the basis of race, sex, gender, and national origin continue to apply to the delivery of health care services."
But, it has been met with a lot of opposition...
Many of whom have claimed it will allow doctors to refuse to offer a whole host of services for LGBTQ+ patients.
Opponents, including the Human Rights Campaign, have said it will cut off health care treatments such as hormone treatments for transgender patients needing in-patient care for an infection.
It could also see refusal for birth control prescriptions.
In a statement, ACLU of Arkansas Executive Director Holly Dickson said: "There is no sugarcoating this: this bill is another brazen attempt to make it easier to discriminate against people and deny Arkansans the health care services they need."
The law comes as Hutchinson last week signed into law a ban on transgender athletes from competing in female sports.
The bill won't come into effect until later this summer.
For more stories on the subject, scroll on...