Rep. Adams Votes to Pass Historic Equality Act to End Discrimination Against All LGBTQ Americans
WASHINGTON – Today, Congresswoman Alma Adams (NC-12) voted to pass H.R. 5, the Equality Act, to ensure that all LGBTQ Americans are granted the full protections guaranteed by federal civil rights law. The Equality Act extends anti-discrimination protections not just in the workplace, but in every place – in employment, education, access to credit, jury service, federal funding, housing and public accommodations. Adams is an original cosponsor of the Equality Act, and has cosponsored the legislation in every Congress since her first full term began in 2015.
“Today, I voted to secure the promise of equality and justice for the LGBTQ community in North Carolina and across the country,” said Rep. Adams. “The Equality Act will end legal discrimination against LGBTQ Americans and prevent hateful and discriminatory legislation like H.B. 2 from being enacted once and for all. This landmark legislation reaffirms that freedom from discrimination is a fundamental civil right that belongs to every American and that no North Carolinian or any American should ever lose their job or their home, or be denied access to essential services simply because of who they are or whom they love. I urge the United States Senate to send this bill to President Biden’s desk because we can’t sleep on equality – we have to win it.”
Countless members of the national LGBTQ community still live in states where, though they have the right to marry, they have no explicit, state-level non-discrimination protections in other areas of daily life. In 27 states, LGBTQ Americans do not have state protections against being denied housing because of their sexual orientation; 31 states lack protections regarding access to education; and 38 states lack protections regarding jury service. The Equality Act amends existing federal civil rights laws to create a nationwide standard that explicitly prohibits discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity everywhere.
Despite the Supreme Court’s recent Bostock v. Clayton County decision affirming LGBTQ Americans are protected from discrimination in the workplace under federal law, the Trump Administration advanced an anti-LGBTQ agenda. One of the first Executive Orders the Biden-Harris Administration issued after being sworn-in was a mandate requiring all federal agencies be fully in compliance with the Bostock decision.
The Equality Act remains necessary to codify civil rights protections in every arena of life in America and ensure that future administrations cannot reinterpret the Supreme Court ruling or deny LGBTQ individuals their full rights and protections. H.R. 5 enjoys the overwhelming support of the American people – 70 percent of whom favor the legislation’s vital protections – as well as robust support from the business community, including the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and hundreds of leading businesses and corporations that recognize that the strength of our economy and our society requires equal protection under the law.
# # #