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USA: GOP Rolls Out Unnecessary Bill To Protect Religious Institutions

Thursday, September 19th, 2013

US Capitol BuildingWith nothing better to do (see debt limit, immigration bill, federal budget etc.) the house GOP is ready to roll out a bill that would protect religious institutions from same-sex marriage.

The Hill reports:

Rep. Raul Labrador (R-Idaho) plans to introduce the Marriage and Religious Freedom Act Thursday. He said the bill “ensures that any religious institution, organization or church that believes that marriage should continue to remain between one man and one woman will not be discriminated against by the federal government.”

Even the bill’s sponsor admits it’s unnecessary:

I believe the Constitution protects these institutions,” he said, “but I just want to make sure that it’s in the law, that it’s 100 percent sure, that people have no question about it.”

But hey, what else is the House GOP have to do?

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Pennsylvania, USA: Two Bills Introduced to Protect LGBT Citizens

Wednesday, May 8th, 2013

you tube bigMore than a hundred lawmakers in pennsylvania have gotten behind a bill to protect LGBT citizens from discrimination. Towleroad.com reports:

A broad group of state lawmakers today introduced bills HB 300/SB300, which would ban discrimination based on sexual orientation, gender identity or expression statewide in employment, housing, credit and public accommodations. And they cited a record high level of support for the measures. “These identical proposals have a common goal — to end, once and for all, the last vestige of legal discrimination in Pennsylvania based on an individual’s sexual orientation or gender identity or expression,” said state Rep. Dan Frankel (D-Squirrel Hill), a co-sponsor of HB300 with Republican state Rep. Chris Ross, and sponsor of the bill in previous years.

The bill apparently has some bipartisan support, although it’s hard to say what its chances are in the GOP controlled and gerrymandered state legislature.

France: Country Passes Transgender Protection Law

Monday, July 16th, 2012

The French senate voted unanimously last week to prohibit discrimination against transgender people. Unfortunately, the language used to identify the protections was “sexual identity,” which is a less accurate term than “gender identity” as used in other legislation throughout Europe.

Still, a number of impassioned speeches preceded the important vote, including from Sen. Michelle Miller (Socialist Party):

MILLER: Transgender people have alerted us to high frequency of harassment and assaults they experience, particularly during the transition period that can last several years. It seems necessary to me to complete the law on discrimination and to add recognition of transphobia.

See the Full Story at Think Progress

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Liberia: Government Promises to Defend Gays

Tuesday, April 10th, 2012

The Liberian government issued a statement last week promising to prosecute members of an anti-LGBT group who threatened activists with death.

In the statement, the government said it “supports the rights of any of its citizens to hold dear their traditional values, [but] it will neither countenance nor condone any form of intolerance whose objective is to stifle the exercise of individual freedoms and the advance of civil liberties.”

The statement also said that security agencies would investigate the threats and arrest anyone threatening gay rights advocates.

Full Story from Think Progress

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UT: 73% Think Gays Deserve Protection, But 54% Think It’s a Choice

Tuesday, December 20th, 2011

Utah Gay Rights PollA majority of Utahns favor legal protection statewide for gay and transgender individuals when it comes to employment and housing. However, results from a recently released poll also showed that most Utahns do not support marriage or adoption rights for gay or transgender couples.

The poll, commissioned by Equality Utah — a Salt Lake-based civil rights organization focusing on equal rights and protections for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Utahns and their families — was conducted by research firm Dan Jones and Associates. The survey polled 801 households across the state and contained a margin of error of plus or minus 3.5 percent.

Among the findings was that 73 percent of respondents somewhat or strongly favor a statewide nondiscrimination law that would make it illegal for someone to be fired from a job solely because they are gay or transgender. The same 73 percent also somewhat or strongly favor a statewide nondiscrimination law that would make it illegal for someone to be evicted from housing solely because they are gay or transgender.

Full Story from KSL

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US: The Advocate Offers new Interactive Equality Guide to Employment Protections

Thursday, September 15th, 2011

Use this map to find out if your state offers protections against employment discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. While there’s no federal law against firing a person for being LGBT, 21 states and Washington, D.C., prohibit sexual orientation discrimination, while 15 of these, plus D.C., also cover gender identity.

If you unfortunately work for a hostile employer and live in a place that leaves you vulnerable to discrimination, there’s still some legal recourse. Kate Kendell, executive director for the National Center for Lesbian Rights, says, “Even though there’s no employment nondiscrimination law based on sexual orientation or gender identity, Title VII [of the Civil Rights Act of 1964] has been found through past cases to prohibit discrimination that is grounded in gender stereotypes, for example, a woman who is not sufficiently feminine.”

Full Story from The Advocate

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