Lambda Legal Applauds ENDA Passage Through Senate Committee

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July 10, 2013
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LAMBDA LEGAL SUPERVISING SENIOR STAFF ATTORNEY GREGORY R. NEVINS

Today, after the Senate Health, Labor, Education & Pensions Committee took a bipartisan 15-7 vote to send the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) to the Senate floor.

LGBT equality keeps advancing because fairness is a fundamental American value. This historic vote marks the first time a congressional committee approved an inclusive bill to protect all LGBT people, including people who are transgender, from discrimination at work. With an inclusive ENDA headed to the Senate floor, we are one step closer to passing a law that will ensure workplace equality for the LGBT community.

From the thousands of calls Lambda Legal gets each year, we know that workplace discrimination is one of the most frequent problems that LGBT people face. Workplace equality has been a top priority for all of Lambda Legal's 40-year history.

The best legal protection against discrimination is an explicit law that leaves no doubt that employees must be treated fairly regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity, but only 22 jurisdictions in the United States expressly ban discrimination in employment on the basis of sexual orientation and only 18 cover gender identity and expression explicitly. ENDA will ensure that in most workplaces a person's job performance, rather than sexual orientation or gender identity, will determine success on the job, a proposition Americans overwhelmingly support in poll after poll.  Fairness in employment is a fundamental American principle and it should apply to all Americans. ENDA will fill a glaring gap in our national employment policy by requiring equality for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender workers across the country.

With ENDA headed to the full Senate for a vote, we urge Congress to act swiftly to pass this law to ensure workplace equality for the LGBT community. We thank the 15 senators from both parties who voted in favor of it.

Read the press release.