Lambda Legal Commends Virginia Gov. Northam for Signing Comprehensive Nondiscrimination Bill

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April 12, 2020

(Richmond, VA, April 12, 2020) – Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam late yesterday signed into law the Virginia Values Act, historic legislation that bans anti-LGBTQ discrimination in employment, housing and public spaces. The bill was passed with strong, bipartisan support by both houses of the Virginia General Assembly.

Lambda Legal CEO Kevin Jennings issued the following statement:

“Today is indeed a monumental day for Virginia. With his signature, Governor Ralph Northam has established the Commonwealth of Virginia as the first southern state to enact substantial protections for LGBTQ Virginians and their families, ensuring they enjoy the same protections against unfair biases in housing, employment and public spaces as all other residents of the state. Virginia now stands as a beacon of fairness, inclusivity and diversity. Virginia is now fully open for business.

“LGBTQ Virginians and their families have needed these protections for a long time. This is especially true as Virginia, like every state across the nation, confronts the COVID-19 pandemic. As a proud native son of the South, having grown up just across Virginia’s southern border, I know the commonwealth is sending a powerful message of inclusion and possibility throughout the region. As importantly, as a former teacher, I know that message will be especially meaningful and life-affirming for young people.

“A special thanks and congratulations to Equality Virginia and the Virginia Values Act champions in the General Assembly -- Senate Majority Leader Dick Saslaw, Speaker Eileen Filler-Corn, Senators Adam Ebbin, Jennifer Boysko, and Jennifer McClellan, and Delegates Mark Sickles, Mark Levine and Delores McQuinn. Thanks also to the Equality Federation, Human Rights Campaign and Freedom for All Americans. Together, you have made possible a new day for all Virginians.”