SALT LAKE CITY — The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints issued a statement Sunday rebuting claims that it had quietly announced support of a statewide non-discrimination bill that included protections for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people.
In a statement to FOX 13 on Sunday, the LDS Church said it had made no such announcement. The website Utah Political Capitol claimed the church had posted an announcement on a site indicating full support of non-discrimination laws for LGBTQ people.
LDS Church officials said Sunday the text that “beta” website was referring to related to the faith’s support of a 2009 non-discrimination ordinance in Salt Lake City that included LGBT people.
The full statement from Eric Hawkins, Senior Manager for Media Relations with the LDS Church, was sent to FOX 13 News’ Ben Winslow and is provided below.
“The reference to non-discrimination ordinances was meant to reflect the church’s support for the 2009 Salt Lake ordinance and is not an announcement of any kind.
“The Church has been clear that its support of this specific ordinance was due to language that attempted to balance issues of non-discrimination and religious freedom.
“This clarification has now been made to the page in question.
“This is a beta site and is not a final product. Additional edits and changes are possible before it reaches final completion.”
Senate Bill 100, the most recent attempt at a statewide non-discrimination bill regarding the LGBT community was introduced in the most recent legislative session but did not make it to the floor for debate or vote. The Utah State Legislature has seen similar measures introduced in years past, but efforts to make such bills into law have failed.
Church officials have previously told FOX 13 News’ Ben Winslow that they would like to see the text of any proposed bill before deciding if they would support that measure or not.