Watch CBS News

Human Rights Campaign issues latest Florida travel advisory

Another civil rights organization on Tuesday issued a travel advisory for Florida, joining several groups in cautioning potential visitors to the state. 

The advisory, issued by the Human Rights Campaign, an LGBTQ+ organization, detailed risks associated with moving to or visiting Florida. The organization's warning was issued as an update to a March advisory by Equality Florida, which is also a civil rights advocacy group. 

Equality Florida published its advisory after Gov. Ron DeSantis signed the so-called "Don't Say Gay" bill into law. Since then, DeSantis has signed several anti-transgender bills into law. The most recent bills, which he signed in May, target drag shows and gender-affirming care for minors. They also restrict discussion of personal pronouns.

"Those who visit must join us in their vocal opposition to these dangerous policies," Human Rights Campaign President Kelley Robinson said. "Those who pick another place to work, to go to school or to spend their vacation should make clear why they're not heading to Florida."

The Human Rights Campaign noted its advisory is not a "blanket recommendation against travel nor a call for boycott." 

When asked about the latest notice, DeSantis' press secretary reiterated what he'd said on Monday about a similar travel advisory issued by the NAACP.

"As Governor DeSantis announced last week, Florida is seeing record-breaking tourism," spokesperson Jeremy T. Redfern said. "This is nothing more than a stunt."

The NAACP travel advisory, issued Saturday, notes that Florida "has become hostile to Black Americans." The organization noted it had issued the advisory in response to DeSantis' "aggressive attempts to erase Black history and to restrict diversity, equity, and inclusion programs in Florida schools."

The DeSantis administration in January blocked the introduction of an Advanced Placement course for high school students that focuses on African American studies. DeSantis also supported a measure banning the teaching of "critical race theory" in public schools.

The League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) is another group that has issued a Florida travel advisory. In its May 17 notice, the organization cited strict Florida laws dealing with immigrants, which LULAC president Domingo Garcia said presented a clear and present danger to Latinos. 

"Florida is a dangerous, hostile environment for law-abiding Americans and immigrants," Garcia said.

In addition to the recent series of travel notices, DeSantis is facing a lawsuit over the anti-drag law. Hamburger Mary's in Orlando, which hosts "family friendly" drag show performances, on Monday filed a lawsuit against the state of Florida and DeSantis, alleging the law violates the restaurant's First Amendment rights to free expression.

DeSantis, who's expected to launch a presidential campaign soon, is also dealing with pushback from Disney over Florida's "Don't Say Gay" law. Most recently, Disney, one of the state's biggest draws for tourists, canceled a $1 billion plan to build a campus in Florida.

Tourism is a massive industry in Florida. Last year, about 137.6 million people visited the state, according to tourism agency Visit Florida. Visitors contributed $101.9 billion to the state's economy and supported more than 1.7 million jobs in 2021. 

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.