Employment Non Discrimination Act

Activists Join Rep. Eleanor Holmes Norton to Protest Bogus ‘Religious Liberty’ Objections to DC Anti-Discrimination Law

The right-wing tactic of pushing discriminatory policies under the guise of religious freedom is nothing new -- we’ve already seen it used to hurt LGBT people in North Carolina, Louisiana, and elsewhere across the country. But now Republican lawmakers are going a step further, by attacking anti-discrimination legislation meant to protect Americans who aren't even represented in Congress.

The legislation is Washington, DC’s Reproductive Health Non-Discrimination Act (RHNDA), which would protect workers from being fired or punished by their employers for things like using birth control, getting pregnant without being married, or having an abortion. DC’s City Council recently passed RHNDA, and now Congress is using its (fundamentally undemocratic) authority to reverse DC’s local laws to repeal it on the grounds that it violates the religious freedom of employers. Last week, the House Appropriations Committee approved a rider that would block DC from using local funds to enforce RHNDA.

Today, Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC) held a press conference in DC, where she denounced these congressional attacks and praised the DC employers who have vowed to embrace RHNDA’s protections anyway.

“Republicans do not understand how united this city is against discrimination, and they do not need to; they just need to let the District be the District... Our Republican opponents claim that the Reproductive Health Non-Discrimination Act will allow pro-choice employees of anti-choice organizations to espouse their own personal pro-choice beliefs.  That falsehood must be met with the truth that employees must carry out the mission of their employer.”

Nearly 33,000 people have already signed PFAW’s petition telling Congress not to meddle with DC’s Reproductive Health Non-Discrimination Act.

PFAW

Employment Non-Discrimination Act Passes Senate Committee

WASHINGTON – In response to the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) gaining bipartisan approval from the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee today, People For the American Way President Michael Keegan released the following statement:

“Today’s vote is an exciting step forward on the road toward full equality for LGBT Americans.  All employees deserve to be judged by their qualifications and work performance rather than by who they are or who they love.  ENDA is common-sense legislation that would establish employment protections for LGBT workers nationwide.

“There’s no question that protecting the rights of LGBT workers is the right thing to do, but it also increasingly reflects the values of most Americans. A majority of Americans support ENDA and they know that all hardworking people should have the same shot at earning a living and contributing to our economy and our country. And yet without ENDA, in 29 states it is currently legal to fire someone for being gay – and in 33 states for being transgender or gender non-conforming. 

“The far Right is already clamoring that passing ENDA would lead to everything from sexual assault to the end of religious freedom in our country.  But in reality, this legislation is the right thing to do and a no-brainer that all of Congress should be able to support. Workplace discrimination of any kind is not the American way.”


###
 

Anti-Gay Politics and the Religious Right

An analysis of the Religious Right's anti-gay policies and activities, leading up to the Christian Coalition's 1998 Road to Victory Conference.

Share this page: Facebook Twitter Digg SU Digg Delicious