House Equality Caucus Co-Chairs Praise Introduction of the Equality Act

Jul 23, 2015
Press Release

1433 Longworth House Office Building, Washington, D.C. 20515

Date: July 23, 2015         Contact:  Roddy Flynn, (202) 257-8416

House Equality Caucus Co-Chairs Praise Introduction of the Equality Act

Washington, DC – The Co-Chairs of the Congressional LGBT Equality Caucus praised the introduction of the historic Equality Act, the first comprehensive LGBT nondiscrimination bill to be introduced in Congress.  The Equality Caucus Co-Chairs issued the following statement in response to the introduction of the Equality Act:

“In most states, you can get married on Saturday, post your wedding photos to Facebook on Sunday, and then get fired on Monday just because of who you are,” said Equality Caucus Co-Chair and Equality Act prime sponsor Rep. David Cicilline.  “This is completely wrong. Fairness and equality are core American values. No American citizen should ever have to live their lives in fear of discrimination,” said Cicilline. “I am introducing the Equality Act today with 157 House co-sponsors in order to ensure that LGBT Americans have the same rights and protections afforded to all other Americans.”

“While the Supreme Court ruling on marriage equality last month was the most significant victory to date for the LGBT community, there is still much more work to be done,” Equality Caucus Co-Chair Rep. Mark Takano said.  “Currently, millions of LGBT Americans lack a number of basic rights that other Americans take for granted, such as protection from discrimination in employment, housing, education, credit, and more. LGBT Americans deserve the same rights and protections as everyone else – end of story. The Equality Act provides those missing protections and more. I thank my colleague Rep. David Cicilline for introducing this legislation and I look forward to making the case for this important civil rights legislation.”

“Our nation was built on a foundation of equality and individual liberty, but for far too long, our laws have lagged behind our values,” said Equality Caucus Co-Chair Rep. Jared Polis. “The Equality Act is a historic piece of civil rights legislation, and the principle at its core could not be simpler: discrimination is wrong, no matter what form it takes, whom it targets, or where it occurs. I’m proud to join with Senator Merkley, Representative Cicilline, and countless other Americans from all faiths and walks of life who have come together to champion this effort.”

“The Supreme Court’s historic marriage equality ruling now means same-sex couples across the country can now marry freely, but in a majority of states you can still be fired simply because of who you love,” said Equality Caucus Co-Chair Rep. Mark Pocan. “This patchwork system of state laws leaves far too many people vulnerable to discrimination in the workplace and other areas of daily life. The Equality Act will protect individuals from discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity in all areas of society, including the workplace, schools, housing, access to credit, and public accommodations. Every American has the right to equal protection under the law, regardless of who they love, or where they live.”

“Every American deserves the same opportunity to love and care for his or her family,” Equality Caucus Co-Chair Rep. Kyrsten Sinema said.  “I am working to pass the Equality Act to ensure the American promise of freedom, opportunity, and security is real for everyone.”

“Even after last month’s Supreme Court decision to legalize marriage cross the country, too many LGBT Americans still face discrimination in their homes, schools, and workplaces simply because of who they are or who they love,” said Equality Caucus Co-Chair Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney.  “It’s appalling that some states want to sanction further discrimination against their own neighbors. Now is the time to once and for all replace the patchwork of protections for LGBT Americans with this historic, comprehensive federal non-discrimination bill.”

Please contact Roddy Flynn at 202.257.8416 (cell) or with press inquiries.

The mission of the Congressional LGBT Equality Caucus is to promote lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) equality. The bi-partisan LGBT Equality Caucus is strongly committed to achieving the full enjoyment of human rights for LGBT people in the U.S. and around the world. By serving as a resource for Members of Congress, their staff, and the public on LGBT issues, the Caucus works toward the extension of equal rights, the repeal of discriminatory laws, the elimination of hate-motivated violence, and the improved health and wellbeing for all regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity/expression.