The comprehensive bill will add LGBTQ+ people to existing civil rights laws and strengthen protections for all people—including women, religious minorities, and people of color
Washington, D.C. – Today, US Representative David Cicilline (D-RI) and US Senator Jeff Merkley (D-OR) announced the introduction of the Equality Act, bipartisan federal legislation that will add nondiscrimination protections for LGBTQ+ Americans into federal civil rights laws to ensure fair treatment in employment, housing, healthcare, education, and other areas. The bill also includes a ban on sex discrimination in public spaces and federally-funded programs.
“Family Equality applauds the re-introduction of the Equality Act, an urgently needed piece of legislation that will ensure that LGBTQ+ people can protect their families and contribute to their communities,” says Denise Brogan-Kator, CEO (Interim) and Chief Policy Officer at Family Equality. “Across the country, LGBTQ people can still get fired from our jobs, evicted from our homes, denied service in a restaurant, or face our children being bullied in school simply because of who we are, who we love, how our families were formed, and what our parents look like. Now more than ever, we need comprehensive federal protections that are clear and consistent.”
“LGBTQ+ and Two-Spirit youth and parents urgently need passage of the Equality Act, which prohibits discrimination in child welfare services and prohibits conversion therapy, which so many LGBTQ+ and gender non-conforming foster youth are subjected to,” said Julie Kruse, Director of Federal Policy at Family Equality.
The Equality Act enjoys broad bipartisan support in Congress, and polling from PRRI shows the measure is strongly supported by 83% of Americans across all walks of life and political affiliations. Family Equality joins more than 600 national, state, and local organizations in urging the swift passage of the Equality Act, alongside a broad coalition of faith-based groups and 335 major corporations. It was first introduced in 2015 by US Representatives David Cicilline (D-RI) and John Lewis (D-GA) and Senators Jeff Merkley (D-OR), Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), and Cory Booker (D-NJ).
About Family Equality
Family Equality advances legal and lived equality for LGBTQ+ families, and for those who wish to form them, through building community, changing hearts and minds, and driving policy change. Family Equality believes every LGBTQ+ person should have the right and opportunity to form and sustain a loving family, regardless of who they are or where they live. Learn more at familyequality.org.
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