LGBT rights advocates have accused the
Florida governor's office of breaking a promise to issue an executive
order protecting LGBT state workers and contractors against
They claim that Governor Rick Scott's
office promised the order after 49 people died and dozens were
wounded when a lone gunman with possible ties to ISIS opened fire on
June 12, 2016 in the Pulse nightclub, a gay nightclub in Orlando.
At the time, Scott offered his
condolences to the families of the victims and the LGBT community.
“These are individuals,” Scott
said. “Let's love everyone of them.”
When asked by a reporter Tuesday
whether his office made the promise, Scott, a Republican, refused to
Nadine Smith, CEO of Equality Florida,
told the AP that the promise came from Scott's then-Chief of Staff
Kim McDougal and legislative affairs director Kevin Reilly.
“They sat with us and said, 'This is
something that is important.' This was an issue they believed could
move forward and if there was any problem, any concerns, they would
let us know,” Smith said.
Scott was criticized for initially not
mentioning that the attack targeted an LGBT venue. In later
interviews and speeches, Scott, who supported Florida's ban on
same-sex marriage, mentioned the LGBT community.