Anti-Discrimination Executive Order Struck Down

On November 1, 2017, a three-judge panel of Louisiana’s First Circuit Court of Appeal upheld a district court’s decision that the Governor can not enforce an executive order prohibiting discrimination on the basis of “sexual orientation” or “gender identity” in all contracts, services and employment by the state.

After Governor John Bel Edwards issued the executive order, it was quickly challenged by Attorney General Jeff Landry, who asserted that the Governor’s executive order was an unconstitutional legislative act. On November 29, 2016, District Court Judge Todd Hernandez ruled that the executive order was an unlawful ultra-vires act that usurped the legislative branch’s constitutional authority.

The decision by the panel of the First Circuit Court of Appeal was unanimous, noting that current Louisiana anti-discrimination laws do not prohibit discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity.

Louisiana Department of Justice v. Edwards