Senate committee set to vote on long-stalled Employment Non Discrimination Act
ENDA has been introduced in all but one Congress since 1994
With momentum from the Supreme Court’s rulings last week on the Defense of Marriage Act and Proposition 8, the Employment Anti-Discrimination Act will get a committee vote in the US Senate on 10 July.
The long-stalled ENDA, introduced again in April by a bipartisan group of lawmakers, has been schedule for a vote before the Senate’s Health, Education, Labor & Pensions Committee.
President Barack Obama said last month that he wants to see the long-stalled legislation enacted.
‘In 34 states, you can be fired just because of who you are and who you love,’ Obama said at the recent LGBT Pride Month Reception at The White House. ‘That’s wrong and we’ve got to change that.’
Obama received a letter in March from 110 members of the US Congress asking him to sign ENDA into law by executive order rather than hoping a Republican-led House of Representatives will ever pass it.
The president has said that he supports ENDA but would like to see it passed by Congress in much the same way the end of the anti-gay military policy Don’t Ask Don’t Tell was handled.
‘We need to get that passed. I want to sign that bill, we need to get it done now,’ Obama said. ‘I think we can make that happen because after the last four-and-a-half years, you can’t tell me things can’t happen.’
ENDA would prohibit discrimination in hiring and employment on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity by civilian, nonreligious employers with at least 15 employees.