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Why The Equality Act Can’t Wait Any Longer

Today, millions of LGBTQ Americans still lack basic legal protections in states across the country – leaving our community vulnerable to discrimination that compromises our safety, families, jobs and our lives.

In fact, in a majority of states, LGBTQ people can get married on Saturday and risk being fired from their job on Monday because of their sexual orientation or gender identity. That’s wrong and it’s dangerous- and that’s why Congress must pass the Equality Act.

Tomorrow, Congress will reintroduce the Equality Act with bipartisan and unprecedented corporate support. The Equalityl would extend existing civil rights protections to LGBTQ people by prohibiting discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity across key areas of life, including employment, housing, credit, education, public spaces and services, federally-funded programs and jury service.

Discrimination is still a real and persistent problem for many LGBTQ Americans. HRC polling from 2015 found that nearly two-thirds of self-identified LGBTQ Americans report experiencing discrimination — including people like Carter Brown, a transgender man from Texas who lost his job after he was outed by his colleagues.

And Brown isn’t alone in his quest for non-discrimination protections — roughly 50 percent of LGBTQ Americans live in states where they’re at risk of being fired, denied housing, or refused service because of who they are. There is no federal law explicitly protecting LGBTQ people from discrimination and 31 states still lack fully-inclusive non-discrimination protections for the LGBTQ community. Passing this law would not only protect thousands of LGBTQ people from losing their jobs, but will help our community to thrive in the workplace and in society.  

As momentum for full equality continues to grow, Congress must act to combat and extinguish LGBTQ discriminaiton once and for all.

Stay tuned to HRC’s blog and social media channels for more information about the Equality Act.