House Bill Announced Today To Ban Workplace Discrimination Based On Gender Or Sexual Orientation

June 24, 2009 12:00 am

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WASHINGTON – Representative Barney Frank (D-MA) announced the introduction of a bill today that would make workplace discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity illegal. As a long time defender of the civil rights and civil liberties of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people, the American Civil Liberties Union urges Congress to pass the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA). If the group of bipartisan co-sponsors, including the Chairmen of the Judiciary and Education and Labor Committees successfully pass this legislation, it would become the first-ever ban on employment discrimination of LBGT people.

LBGT people are frequently discriminated against in hiring, firing, promotion and compensation decisions. Unjust discrimination against gay and effeminate men as well as lesbians and masculine women is common in the workplace.

The following can be attributed to Christopher Anders, ACLU Senior Legislative Counsel:

“If passed, ENDA would promote workplace equality for everyone by expanding protections for sexual orientation and gender identity. Employment discrimination hurts not just families, but also the economy by creating hostile workplaces and reducing the earning power of LGBT people.

“The introduction of the first-ever federal legislation banning employment discrimination of LBGT people is a fitting tribute to the 40th anniversary of the historic Stonewall riots – the birth of the gay rights movement.”

For an ACLU report about workplace discrimination of LBGT people, go to Working in the Shadows: Ending Employment Discrimination for LGBT Americans.

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