There is a crucial vote on the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) scheduled for later this month in the House Committee on Education and Labor. There's a strong possibility that the bill the committee will vote to mark up will NOT be the same bill we've supported this year.
If your representative is on the Education and Labor Committee — see the "target members" list — we need you to call her or him with the message: do not mark-up ENDA unless it includes the original language protecting victims of discrimination based on gender identity.
Capitol Switchboard: 202-224-3121
People For, along with activists and organizations representing both the civil rights and the LGBT communities, strongly opposes a move to strip gender identity from the bill's language. Here's why:
* It violates the spirit and intent of this legislation to single out one group of people as somehow not worthy of protection from job discrimination.
* The years-long battle to pass this historic nondiscrimination legislation would be undermined by leaving out any part of the LGBT community.
* Transgender Americans are perhaps the most vulnerable group within the LGBT community to various forms of discrimination, so they arguably need these protections the most.
* Allowing employers to discriminate based on real or perceived "gender identity" could also affect people who are not technically transgender, just based on certain behavioral traits they may or may not exhibit.
We're committed to passing federal employment nondiscrimination legislation, but not at any cost. Moving this bill forward without gender identity will leave an often discriminated-against group of Americans without protections for the foreseeable future. This is unacceptable.
Please tell your representative to move the ENDA bill forward ONLY IF it includes gender identity.