Push To Outlaw Job Discrimination Based On Sexual Orientation Or Gender Identity
"I will place the weight of my administration behind the enactment of the Matthew Shepard Act to outlaw hate crimes and a fully inclusive Employment Non-Discrimination Act to outlaw workplace discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity."-- Obama letter to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) Americans
OCTOBER 10, 2009
Obama Highlights Pledge To End Job Discrimination
Obama spoke at a gala hosted by the Human Rights Campaign the day before an equality protest arrived on the National Mall, and used the speech to reiterate a number of his campaign promises, including his pledge to prevent discrimination in the workplace.
“We’re pushing hard to pass an inclusive employee nondiscrimination bill. For the first time ever, an administration official testified in Congress in favor of this law,” he said. “Nobody in America should be fired because they’re gay despite doing a great job and meeting their responsibilities. It's not fair. It's not right. And we're going to put a stop to it.”
Obama was referring to testimony by Assistant Attorney General Tom Perez before the Senate's Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee. “We cannot in good conscience stand by and watch unjustifiable discrimination against Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender individuals occur in the workplace without redress," Perez told the committee in November during a hearing about the Employment Non-Discrimination Act.