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Lawmakers introduce Arizona LGBT anti-discrimination bill

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AP, file
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The Arizona Capitol building

A bipartisan group of Arizona lawmakers that includes the Republican House speaker announced Monday they were introducing legislation that would for the first time protect gay and transgender people from discrimination by businesses, landlords and employers.

The proposal is backed by many business and faith leaders, but opposed by a powerful social conservative group.

The legislation would prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity.

It also would prohibit licensed health care professionals from practicing conversion therapy, which aims to change someone’s sexual orientation.

Cathi Herrod of the social conservative group Center for Arizona Policy says the measure would “treat reasonable disagreement as if it were discrimination.”