A federal appeals court has ruled that the State of Mississippi can enforce a law that allows merchants and government employees to cite religious beliefs to deny services to same-sex couples, but opponents of the law immediately pledged to appeal.
A three-judge panel of the 5th US Circuit Court of Appeals reversed a judge’s decision that had blocked the law. US District Judge Carlton Reeves had ruled that the law unconstitutionally establishes preferred beliefs and creates unequal treatment for LGBT people. His ruling prevented the law from taking effect last July.
The law will still not go into effect immediately, as the Judges gave the Plaintiffs time to appeal. Legal experts said the law, which started as House Bill 1523, is the broadest religious-objections measure enacted by any state.