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Hoyer Statement on Senate Passage of the Employee Non-Discrimination Act

WASHINGTON, DC - House Democratic Whip Steny H. Hoyer (MD) released the following statement after the Senate passed the Employee Non-Discrimination Act with a bipartisan vote of 64-32:

“Today, the Senate took an important step forward toward protecting all Americans from workplace and employment discrimination by passing the Employment Non-Discrimination Act with a strong, bipartisan vote of 64-32.  This legislation will make it illegal to discriminate against LGBT Americans in hiring, provide safeguards against wrongful termination, and ensure that LGBT employees cannot be held back from advancement because of discrimination.  It would set a uniform standard that many states – and, indeed, many private businesses – have already adopted on their own, without burdening businesses or the courts with meritless lawsuits.

“It is shameful that, in many states, employers are permitted to fire workers for no other reason than their sexual orientation or gender identity.  The absence of federal legal protection in the workplace puts at risk the millions of LGBT workers in our economy.  One of our highest national principles has always been the right of every individual to seek meaningful work that can lead to a secure place in our middle class.  The Employment Non-Discrimination Act protects this American tradition by making sure it applies to all of our nation’s workers and the families depending on them.

“I am extremely disappointed that Speaker Boehner has said he will not bring this important bill to the House Floor for a vote.  Not to do so, I believe, is a serious mistake, and I strongly urge him to reconsider and allow the House to take up the Senate's bipartisan Employment Non-Discrimination Act without delay so Members can show that the People’s House stands strongly against discrimination and intolerance.”

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