Support LGBTQ Rights with the Equality Act of 2017
Update (10/5): Attorney General Jeff Sessions has officially reversed the Obama-era policy protecting transgender employees from discrimination under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. This decision makes it more critical than ever that Congress pass the Equality Act to permanently protect LGBTQ workers under Title VII. The Civil Rights Act of 1964 currently protects people from discrimination because of race, skin color, sex, religion, and national origin. However, the Act's crucial anti-discrimination provisions do not cover sexual orientation or gender identity. Thus, in the 30 states without LGBTQ anti-discrimination laws, LGBTQ people can legally be fired, harassed at work, barred from businesses, denied housing, and more because of their sexual orientation and/or gender identity. The Equality Act of 2017 would provide the necessary national-level protections for LGBTQ people by updating existing laws, like the Civil Rights Act of 1964, to explicitly ban discrimination because of gender identity and sexual orientation. The law would also revise the Civil Rights Act to ban sex-based discrimination in public spaces and services as well as federally funded programs. While the Equality Act has been introduced in the past, it was filed this year with unprecedented support in both the House and the Senate. As of June 6, the bill had 195 co-sponsors in the House (including two Republicans) and 45 in the Senate (all Democrats and Independents). We must capitalize on this momentum to secure national-level protections for LGBTQ people."