Tag Archives: LGBT Rights Campaigners

Obama Finally Backs Law To Protect LGBT Workers In All 50 States

Though same-sex marriage is now legal across all 50 US states, there is still a lot need to do to protect LGBTs in American.

Anti-discrimination laws vary from state to state – meaning that you can still legally be fired for being LGBT in 28 states.

However, now President Obama is throwing his weight behind a proposed anti-discrimination law, which would protect LGBT workers in all 50 states.

Obama previously signed an Executive Order outlawing discrimination, but this only extends to federal contractors.

The President had declined to openly back the Equality Act last month – but this week vowed to support the law, which already has backing from most Democratic lawmakers.

His press spokesperson Josh Earnest said:

The administration strongly supports the Equality Act. That bill is historic legislation that would advance the cause of equality for millions of Americans.

We look forward to working with Congress to ensure that the legislative process produces a result that balances both the bedrock principles of civil rights… with the religious liberty that we hold dear in this country.”

Over 100 Democrats have co-sponsored the bill – which would outlaw discrimination and ensure a range of protections for LGBT people – and it also has numerous endorsements from large corporations including Google, Microsoft and Apple.

[interaction id=”560c2d3377aa6c1a034e607b”]



LGBT Rights Campaigners Tackle Job and Housing Discrimination Following Same-Sex Marriage Ruling

Last month, history was made when the Supreme Court of the United States ruled 5-4 in favour of same-sex marriage. While some states around the county have been steadily bringing same-sex marriage into law, in many others it remained illegal to marry a same-sex partner, meaning that same-sex couples may have to travel across the other side of the country just to get married.

Thanks to the Supreme Court’s ruling, same-sex marriage is now legal in all of the United States, and same-sex couples can get married wherever they would like.

This is a monumental achievement and it follows the growing acceptance of the LGBT community  – something also signified by the fact that many straight allies and many companies have turned their social media icons ‘rainbow’ in support. However, it’s not the be all and end all of the LGBT rights movements and much needs to be done.

For example, in 27 states, employees can still be fired for being gay. While President Obama did recently sign an executive order that banned federal agencies and contractors from discriminating based on sexual orientation or gender identity, that doesn’t include everyone.


Furthermore, some local governments have antidiscrimination laws (even if the state does not) but Ruth Colker, an expert on discrimination law at Moritz College of Law at Ohio State University, told The New York Times that

typically, the penalty for violating a city ordinance is more akin to a traffic violation” and that “state-level penalties can be much more significant.”

As a result, LGBT rights activists will be tackling job and housing related discrimination as their big, post-marriage equality fight. While there has been a lot of push back previously, specially from right-wing religious groups who feel that discrimination law will be used to persecute them for their religious beliefs, things do seem to be looking up.

Chai R. Feldblum, a commissioner at the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, says that under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, LGBT discrimination is illegal and that they have pursued over 200 cases based on this. Meanwhile, Shannon P. Minter, legal director at the National Center for Lesbian Rights, says that

I think there’s a very strong consensus now among advocacy groups that we need a broader bill that puts discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity on the same footing as race, religion and gender”

It is yet to be seen how activists’ efforts will pay off, or the work of politicians such as Senator Jeff Merkley, Democrat of Oregon (who wants to specifically add LGBT protections to the Civil Rights Act), but hopefully the Supreme Court’s ruling will snowball into comprehensive equality.