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Equality Caucus Welcomes Landmark Supreme Court Decision on Workplace Discrimination

Jun 15, 2020
Press Release



DATE:  June 15, 2020




Equality Caucus Welcomes Landmark

Supreme Court Decision on Workplace Discrimination


Washington, D.C. – The Congressional LGBT+ Equality Caucus celebrated the Supreme Court’s 6-3 decision affirming that Title VII protects against employment discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. This landmark case is an important step forward in the community’s push for full equality and it comes at a time when equality is under regular attack by the Administration which, on Friday, took the final step to strip LGBT protections from the Affordable Care Act. The Caucus will continue its push for the Equality Act to become law as that Act is much broader than employment discrimination and would ensure protections in other core areas of life – federal funding, jury service, housing, education, credit, and public accommodations.


“Fairness and equality of opportunity are core American values. As a country, we have not always lived up to these ideals for all of our citizens, but today’s Supreme Court decision marks a major step towards ensuring that LGBTQ Americans enjoy the same rights and responsibilities as everyone else. At the same time, we need to recognize how much work remains to be done,” said Co-Chair Rep. David Cilline. “Right now, millions of LGBTQ people can still legally be denied access to housing, education, federal funding, public accommodations, credit, and the opportunity to serve on a jury. The House passed the Equality Act last year to prohibit these forms of discrimination. The bill has been sitting on Mitch McConnell’s desk since then. In the wake of this momentous decision, he should finally allow the Senate to vote on the Equality Act.”


“This is a historic day. The Supreme Court has finally recognized what so many of us know to be true – in America, no worker should be fired or denied a job just because of who they are or who they love,” said Co-Chair Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney. “Mark my words: this victory is just the beginning. The Senate needs to pass the Equality Act and codify full protections under the law for all LGBTQ Americans.”


“Today’s Supreme Court decision is a necessary step forward for a nation that continues to fail to protect the LGBTQ community under a bigoted and prejudiced Trump administration,” said Co-Chair Rep. Mark Pocan. “On the heels of recent murders of Black trans women—Riah Milton and Dominique “Rem’Mie” Fells—and the Trump’s administration decision to legalize healthcare discrimination against LGBTQ people, this ruling is monumental progress to protect the rights of LGBTQ people nationwide. We’re now protected from discrimination at our jobs, but we have much left to defend. From housing to healthcare, we need equity in all areas of American life. The House passed the Equality Act over a year ago, but the Senate has refused to affirm the rights of LGBTQ people in this country. I hope today’s Supreme Court decision encourages the Senate Majority Leader to do his job for once and pass legislation that could make LGBTQ equality the law of the land.”


“The Supreme Court has officially affirmed that LGBTQ+ Americans are protected from discrimination in the workplace. This is welcome news for our community during Pride Month, but it would be remiss to ignore that this decision comes on the heels of a cruel rule finalized by the Trump Administration that will allow for discrimination against trans people seeking healthcare,” said Co-Chair Rep. Mark Takano. “Last year during Pride Month, the House passed the Equality Act with bipartisan support. This legislation would establish non-discrimination protections in employment, healthcare, education, housing, and many other key areas of life. We cannot let Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell bury LGBTQ+ rights in his legislative graveyard. It’s time for all of us to channel the spirit of Pride and demand that he bring the Equality Act to the Senate floor for a vote.”


“Today, the Supreme Court reaffirmed what we already knew: employment discrimination against the LGBTQ+ community is wrong,” said Co-Chair Rep. Angie Craig. “This decision is a major victory in our fight for equality, but we still have so much work to make sure LGBTQ+ Americans have full nondiscrimination protections under the law.”


“No one should be fired because of who they love or how they identify, and today the Supreme Court upheld that basic principle in a landmark victory for LGBTQ rights. Our work to ensure every LGBTQ person can live free from discrimination is far from over, but this is an important step forward in the long march for equality,” said Co-Chair Rep. Sharice Davids. “It’s now time for the Senate to finally pass The Equality Act, which would put in place uniform protections for LGBTQ people, helping ensure they can enjoy basic human rights no matter where they live, work, or go to school.”


“Millions of LGBTQ Americans still live in fear of losing their job because of who they are or who they love, so this decision is welcome news,” said Co-Chair Rep. Chris Pappas. “The Supreme Court confirmed that there must be equal justice under the law for LGBTQ Americans in the workplace. This decision gives our community dignity and legal recourse should our civil rights be violated. There is more work to do, because equal must mean equal in all aspects of our society and economy. This decision further underscores the need to fight for full equality with the passage of the Equality Act, which would prohibit discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity in education, employment, housing, credit, federal jury service, public accommodations, and the use of federal funds. Only then will we be able to truly say under law that everyone matters, that everyone can be themselves, and that no one should live in fear or be treated as a second-class citizen.”


Please contact Shawn Gaylord at 202-257-8416 or with press inquiries.


Founded in 2008, the mission of the Congressional LGBTQ+ Equality Caucus is to promote lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) equality. The Caucus, which is led by the seven openly LGBTQ+ members of Congress, is strongly committed to achieving the full enjoyment of human rights for LGBTQ+ people in the U.S. and around the world.