“Complications Abound: Business Travel and Anti-Abortion, Anti-LGBTQ Laws”.

The recent wave of anti-LGTBQ laws and abortion bans sweeping across the United States has created a difficult situation for business travelers. There are a few states that explicitly restrict access to abortion and some laws that are considered “anti-LGBTQ”, or laws that aim to deny LGBTQ individuals rights or access to certain services and accommodations. This impacts business travelers in a few ways. First, in states where abortion is restricted, medical services related to a woman’s reproductive health may be hard to find or may be classified as a crime. This can be especially problematic when traveling for work, as a traveler may not even be aware of the circumstances in a given area they are being sent to. Secondly, businesses may find it difficult to plan trips to states that actively oppose LGBTQ people. These restrictions can range from denying services to LGBTQ individuals, blocking business entities from providing services to same sex couples, or preventing transgender and non-binary individuals from using the bathroom that conforms to their gender identity. Businesses are likely to be affected by difficulty in accessing accommodations, goods, and services while traveling. For businesses that travel to states with anti-LGBTQ or abortion restrictions, the pressure for companies to maintain compliance with their own diversity and equality initiatives will remain. This is why companies should monitor these state-level laws while creating travel policies that preserve their commitment to inclusion and diversity. Even when the laws conflict with corporate values, companies must remain in compliance with local regulations while keeping their own ethical and moral standards in check. In the end, these new laws and restrictions are forcing many businesses to make changes in the way they travel. Companies may need to contemplate alternative routes, adjust housing arrangements, or simply re-think the entire itinerary. It is certainly an extra burden when planning trips, but companies that actively remain aware and educated on the growing list of restrictions can create the best travel policies and ensure those policies are kept up to date and in compliance with local regulations.

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