National Center for Transgender Equality
September 28, 2007
NCTE Statement on the Employment Non-Discrimination Act
(Washington, DC) - Yesterday our Congressional allies apparently abandoned the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (H.R. 2015), the centerpiece of the LGBT legislative agenda, and introduced two new pieces of legislation which separate the protected classes of gender identity and sexual orientation. NCTE firmly rejects this strategy and joins most other national and many state LGBT organizations in actively opposing these two new bills.
Until last week, the majority of our congressional allies and organizational partners were confident that our years of diligent work were ready to bear fruit. We believe that the original version ENDA, which was fully inclusive of both gender identity and sexual orientation, was prematurely abandoned and should still be called to a vote.
NCTE thanks our friends in Congress for the important work that has already been done, but calls on them to return to their efforts to pass this historic piece of legislation.
It is disheartening to see that a bill, drafted over several years through a collaborative effort of LGBT advocates and allies, would be rejected without a vote and without the counsel or assent of a single one of these organizations.
There has been increasing support over the last decade to include transgender people in all local, state and federal legislation designed to end the injustice and inequality which has been perpetrated against LGBT Americans for generations. In fact there are currently 13 states, the DC and over 100 municipalities which already have passed similar anti discrimination laws to protect people on the basis of both gender identity and sexual orientation.
It is unacceptable at this juncture in the national conversation about the lives of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Americans that transgender people should be excluded from equal protections under the law.
We call on all members of Congress to remember the promise of the Declaration of Independence that all people are created equally and deserve the assurance of life liberty and the pursuit of happiness.
The National Center for Transgender Equality is a national social justice organization devoted to ending discrimination and violence against transgender people through education and advocacy on national issues of importance to transgender people. The National Center for Transgender Equality is a 501(c)3 organization. For more information, please visit www.nctequality.org.
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Include transgender people in ENDA