Washington Markup

New Federal Standards Offer Unprecedented Protections to LGBTI Prisoners

New Federal Standards Offer Unprecedented Protections to LGBTI Prisoners

By Leslie Cooper, LGBT Project at 2:25pm

Yesterday the Department of Justice (DOJ) released the long-awaited National Standards to Prevent, Detect, and Respond to Prison Rape. These standards – the first of their kind—create an historic opportunity to put an end to the epidemic of sexual abuse in prison, which disproportionately affects prisoners who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or have intersex conditions (LGBTI).

It's Not About the Money – Spending vs. Ideology in Congress

By Michael Macleod-Ball, Chief of Staff, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 7:31pm

The first spending bill for the new fiscal year that starts in October was adopted by the House of Representatives today after a week of wrangling. H.R. 5326 will provide funding for the Departments of Justice and Commerce as well as several science…

Anti-Gay Pandering Cannot Stop Historic Momentum for LGBT Rights

Anti-Gay Pandering Cannot Stop Historic Momentum for LGBT Rights

By Ian S. Thompson, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 4:10pm

What an amazing and historic week it has been for the cause of gay rights. On Wednesday, for the first time in our country’s history, a sitting President of the United States said that he supports the freedom to marry for gay and lesbian…

Racial Justice and LGBT Equality – Moving Beyond the Politics of "Divide and Conquer"

By Ian S. Thompson, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 4:53pm

It was recently revealed in internal strategy memos from the anti-gay National Organization for Marriage that the organization hoped to pit racial and ethnic minorities against the LGBT community as a way to defeat and rollback gay rights advances,…

A Look at the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom

A Look at the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom

By Dena Sher, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 12:31pm

In 1998, Congress created the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom to draw attention to violations of religious freedom in other countries. The commissioners vote annually to list countries that are of particular concern or place…

President Obama: LGBT Workers Can't Wait

By Ian S. Thompson, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 10:53am

Late Wednesday afternoon, it was reported that the Obama administration had made the decision to delay issuing an executive order to ensure that federal contractors receiving tax dollars do not discriminate against applicants and employees based…

President Obama, Sign Non-Discrimination Executive Order, Say Dozens of Members of Congress

By Ian S. Thompson, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 5:21pm

On Tuesday afternoon, over 70 members of Congress sent a letter to President Obama urging him to sign an executive order to ensure that federal contractors receiving tax dollars do not discriminate against applicants and employees based on their…

ACLU to Speak at Briefing on Workplace Discrimination Against LGBT Employees

By Deborah J. Vagins, ACLU Washington Legislative Office & Ian S. Thompson, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 4:54pm

On Thursday, the ACLU, as well as partner organizations, will speak at a congressional briefing hosted by Rep. Frank Pallone (D-N.J.) on the subject of sexual orientation and gender identity discrimination in the workplace and the steps that can…

President Obama: The Time Has Come for a Federal Contractors Non-Discrimination Executive Order

By Ian S. Thompson, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 10:01am

In a Metro Weekly exclusive published on Thursday afternoon, Chris Geidner writes that President Obama, as a candidate for the office in 2008, specifically endorsed an executive order to ensure that federal contractors do not discriminate against…

Counting On Us: Release of New Civil Rights Data Is the First Step in Helping Our Kids

Counting On Us: Release of New Civil Rights Data Is the First Step in Helping Our Kids

By Deborah J. Vagins, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 5:21pm

Every day, students in public schools across the country are facing harsh disciplinary measures that may have dire consequences for the rest of their lives.

That was confirmed this week when the Department of Education released Part Two…