4 days ago
Democratic lawmakers introduced legislation Wednesday that would expand the Civil Rights Act of 1964 to cover people regardless of sexual orientation and gender identity.In an op-ed to The Advocate, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Rep. David Cicilline (D-R.I.) said that the inclusion of “diverse, dynamic new members” of Congress this year helped bring the Equality Act to the forefront.“[W]e are bringing our nation closer to its founding promise of full equality by introducing the Equality Act — to finally, fully end discrimination against LGBTQ Americans,” they wrote in the piece published Wednesday.
Pelosi and Cicilline ensured that LGBTQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer/questioning) people would have equal rights and protections “not just in the workplace, but in education, housing, credit, jury service and public accommodations as well.”
The Equality Act has enormous support in the House and is likely to pass. According to NBC News, the legislation has 239 cosponsors.Public opinion is also in the Democrats’ favor. According to a poll from Public Religion Research Institute (PRRI), more than half of Americans in every state support legislation that ensures nondiscrimination for LGBT people.But states don’t reflect that support in their laws. There is no legislation in place in over half of the states that protects LGBT people from discrimination, meaning they could legally be fired or kicked out of their homes for their identity.
It’s unclear if the bill will pass in the Republican-controlled Senate, but the Equality Act has captured the attention of 2020 Democratic hopefuls, ensuring it will stay in the national conversation.
South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg is the only LGBT candidate in the race so far. He threw his support behind the act at a CNN town hall this weekend and in a tweet Wednesday.“We need to end the war on trans Americans,”.
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