By Sharon Aron Baron
U.S. Representative Ted Deutch, FL-22, joined dozens of House Democrats on Thursday in reintroducing the Equality Act.
Sponsored by Representative David Cicilline, RI-01, the bill, which passed the House in 2019, extends protections against discrimination to members of the LGBTQ community.
“This community – our family, friends, and neighbors – deserves the same rights that other Americans enjoy,” said Congressman Deutch, Vice-Chair of the House Equality Caucus and Chair of the LGBTQ Aging Issues Task Force, who added he was honored to represent a strong and tight-knit LGBTQ community in South Florida.
To serve them and all LGBTQ Americans, Rep. Deutch said we must fix our discriminatory laws. He was proudly supporting Congressman Cicilline’s Equality Act to achieve equality under the law, regardless of who you love or how you identify.
Despite the LGBTQ equality movement’s success over the years, millions of LGBTQ Americans can still be discriminated against depending on the state they live in.
In 27 states, a person is at risk of being denied housing because of their sexual orientation or gender identity. LGBTQ people are also at risk of being denied access to education in 31 states and the right to serve on a jury in 41 states.
The Equality Act remedies these disparities by amending existing federal civil rights laws to explicitly prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity in employment education, housing, credit, jury service, public accommodations, and federal funding.
In 2019, the Equality Act passed the House, but the Senate did not act upon the bill after receiving it. President Trump also had signaled that he would have vetoed the Act.
President Biden has pledged to make the Equality Act a priority of his first 100 days in office.
The House is expected to vote on the proposal next week, according to House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (MD-05).
Florida’s 22nd District covers Boca Raton, Coconut Creek, Coral Springs, Deerfield Beach, Fort Lauderdale, Highland Beach. Hillsboro Beach, Lauderdale by the Sea, Lighthouse Point, Margate, Oakland Park, Parkland, Pompano Beach, Tamarac, and Wilton Manors.
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