Responding to Restrictive Legislation. Restrictive state legislation creates a presumption of a relatively unwelcoming climate for same-sex partners attending APSA meetings, though the wide variety of local circumstances does not guarantee this will be the case in each locality in those states. Consequently, it is proposed that APSA adopt a special multi-stage policy in response to this issue.
(1) In locating its meetings, APSA would presume that a city in a state whose legislation restricts local jurisdiction’s rights to recognize same-sex partnerships is an unwelcoming environment for our members. APSA would notify the CVB’s and conference hotels in cities that otherwise meet our annual meeting criteria in these states of our position that their state legal environment does not appear to create a welcoming environment for our members. We will assure these localities that if the state restrictions change, APSA would welcome proposals to site our meetings there.
(2) APSA also recognizes that on a case by case basis there may be cities within these states that warrant an exception to our presumptive policy, because of demonstrated positive local practices or other Association goals. Examples of evidence of positive local practice could one or more items such as the following:
a) adoption of anti-discrimination legislation for its employees;
b) presence of equal opportunity legislation;
c) opinions of and invitations to APSA of local civil rights and LGBT advocacy organizations;
d) recognition of medical power of attorney from city and local hospitals;
e) experience of other associations or groups meeting in this locality; or
f) other evidence of the local climate in respecting same-sex relationships.
Additionally, APSA may consider other information in a decision to accept the locality as a meeting site. Examples of such other information might include regional accessibility, advice and invitations from local political science departments, or contractual responsibilities.
(3) An exception to the restrictive state policy would be handled in the following way:
a) a proposal to meet in a city in one of the restrictive states would be coordinated by the Annual Meeting Committee on the instruction of the Administrative Committee. The Annual Meeting Committee would consult widely and work with APSA staff on relevant information gathering;
b) the annual meeting review committee recommendation and background information would be given tentative review by the APSA Council who could either reject the site or seek member comment;
c) if sent forward, the proposal would be circulated for member comment for a period of at least one month; and
d) the Council would make a final decision about the site.
Policy in Non-restrictive States. In the remaining, non-restrictive, states, while not presuming there is an unwelcoming climate regarding this issue, APSA would still follow a practice of reviewing each site in light of the city’s anti-discrimination record, as our hotel contract language calls for.
APSA would also review the legislative record of states annually to see whether revisions are needed to the list of restrictive states, and would publicly state its position on the difficulty of holding its meeting in states with such restrictions.Brown and Hirsch Bright Line Policy
*Our intent is to prevent the Association from meeting in those states (19) which fall into the category of "most dangerous," as classified by Lambda Legal Defense.