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Content about Employment Non-Discrimination Act

March 26, 2015

Claims policy 'enables sexual harassment and endangers women and kids'

A Michigan woman is suing a gym over its trans-friendly locker room policy.

Yvette Cormier, 48, is seeking more than $25,000 in damages after Planet Fitness canceled her membership for complaining to gym-goers about a transgender woman she saw in the locker room.

The gym's non-discrimination policy states that 'members and guests may use all gym facilities based on their sincere self-reported gender identity.'

March 23, 2015

The Denver employee, with the backing of his pastor, has written a blistering open letter blasting the company for supporting an LGBT History Month initiative

An employee at Home Depot’s North Lakewood store in Denver was so disgusted and angered by a notice on a staff noticeboard advertising an LGBT History Month in June that he has written an open letter to his employer challenging it on its stance towards diversity and inclusion.

In the letter, Timothy Noffsinger says that LGBT people ‘practice and promote’ sexual behaviors that are ‘morally evil and self-destructive sexual deviations.’

March 19, 2015

As anti-gay legislation allowing businesses to discriminate edges closer to becoming law in the state, an Indianapolis man says he is ‘very surprised’ by an explosion of interest he has had in his ‘Open for Service’ sticker campaign

The US is currently seeing a wave of anti-LGBT bills being introduced by lawmakers.

Many of these bills are concerned with ensuring that business owners with strong religious beliefs are legally permitted to refuse service to LGBT customers.

Although it is those companies that have refused to provides services for same-sex marriages that have been making headlines, businesses that are happy to support all sections of the community are now making themselves heard.

March 17, 2015

The briefing, which took place yesterday in Washington, heard arguments both for and against the introduction of federal legislation to protect LGBT workers

Yesterday, in a historic move, the US Commission on Civil Rights (USCCR) held its first briefing on the discrimination faced by LGBT Americans in the workplace.

The USCCR is an independent agency that advises the President and Congress on civil rights matters and issues federal civil rights enforcement reports.

The meeting took place in Washington DC, and subjects discussed included general workplace issues faced by LGBT people, specific transgender issues and religious exemption bills.

March 11, 2015

The Williams Institute says that hundreds of thousands of LGBT employees in the Sunshine State are vulnerable to discrimination in the workplace

A new report published by the Williams Institute in Los Angeles has concluded that – in the absence of explicit statewide legal protections – approximately 328,000 LGBT workers in Florida are vulnerable to employment discrimination.

The situation in Florida is a mirror on the wider legislative situation across the rest of the US – with some states prohibiting employment discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation and gender identity and others not.

March 2, 2015

Our Business Editor, David Hudson, explains what you can expect from the new Gay Star News business section

One of the reasons why we’ve decided to launch a dedicated Business Section is because the corporate world’s attitude towards LGBTI issues has changed tremendously and rapidly in the last 20 years.

At first, some forward-thinking companies began to wake up to the spending power of LGBTI communities – latching on to the so-called ‘Dorothy Dollar’ and ‘Pink Pound’.

Others realized that the gay scene was often the first to adopt new trends – making it the idea place to launch new bespoke products.

February 26, 2015

The writer and editor recalls being fired after informing her boss that she was transitioning… and how she successfully fought the decision

In my life, there have been two memorable days labeled Tuesday, October 16. For the first, I was a naval officer on a ship crossing the Pacific Ocean from Hong Kong to Pearl Harbor. When crossing the International Date Line from west to east, a day has to be repeated. Aboard our ship, that Tuesday lasted for 48 hours.

February 11, 2015

A group of federal Democratic lawmakers have joined forces with Republican congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen to introduce a bill to protect LGBTI students from bullying and discrimination in public schools

Democratic members of the US House of Representatives Jared Polis and Robert C Scott have been joined by Republican congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen in co-sponsoring a bill to protect LGBTI students in public schools in a move the group will encourage bipartisan support for the effort.

The lawmakers introduced the Student Non-Discrimination Act (SNDA) on Tuesday which, if passed, will help protect public school students from bullying, harassment and discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity.

January 31, 2015

The bill would have allowed any business or professional including doctors in Virginia to discriminate against LGBTI people without any legal consequences

A House subcommittee in Virginia on Thursday vetoed a proposed 'conscience clause' bill that would allow anyone holding a state license, including business owners, lawyers and doctors, to legally deny services to gay men and lesbians, even those who are legally married as well as people who are perceived to be gay.

January 30, 2015

Lawmakers side with religious freedom supporters

Idaho Republicans have effectively killed a bill that seeks to add 'sexual orientation' and 'gender identity' to the state's anti-discrimination law, after more than 20 hours of emotional testimony from LGBTI residents.

The Republican-led House State Affairs Committee voted 13 to 4 to hold the 'Add the Words' bill in committee. Democrats voted in favor of the bill.

Republican lawmakers said they feared the measure would lead to lawsuits against those who refused services to LGBTI people because of their religious beliefs. 

January 6, 2015

But 60% say refusing to hire an LGBTI person is discriminatory

Almost 70% of Hong Kong people believe society should tolerate anti-gay views, according to a new survey.

The results released yesterday (5 January) also showed that 57% of respondents said schools should not have to teach that homosexuality and heterosexuality are both 'beautiful.'

Hong Kong Polytechnic University interviewed 611 adults in November for the survey, which was commissioned by the anti-gay Family School Sexual Orientation Discrimination Ordinance Concern Group.

December 19, 2014

AG Eric Holder has announced that federal prosecutors will take the position going forward that sex discrimination provisions in Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 include protections against discrimination based on gender identity

US Attorney General Holder announced yesterday that the Department of Justice will take the position that Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 covering sex discrimination extends to claims of discrimination based on an individual’s gender identity, including transgender status when prosecuting government job discrimination cases.

December 15, 2014

Transgender people in Taiwan still must undergo psychiatric evaluations and surgery before legally changing gender

In December of last year, the Ministry of Health and Welfare (MOHW) in Taiwan recommended that transgender individuals wishing to change their genders should not have to go through psychiatric evaluations nor be subjected to surgery removing their sex organs.

November 17, 2014

City allows trans people to legally change their gender without a court order

Mexico City has approved a bill to allow transgender people to legally change their gender without a court order.

The Legislative Assembly of the Federal District passed the legislation on Thursday (13 November) by 42 votes to zero. Six lawmakers abstained.

Mayor Miguel Ángel Mancera proposed the bill on the recommendation of the assembly's Commission for Attention to Vulnerable Groups.

Jorge Zepeda Cruz, president of the commission, said in a statement that the legal changes were ‘inevitable.’

September 29, 2014

The Minnesota Star Tribune – the most widely-read newspaper in the state – has been widely criticized by users of social media for publishing a full-page advert on Sunday that many readers consider to be anti-transgender

The full-page advert was placed by the Minnesota Child Protection League. The advert encourages parents to contact Minnesota State High School League (MSHSL) officials and ask them to oppose a transgender student policy.

The advert, which many feel plays on trans bigotry and prejudice, depicts the tiled wall of a changing room shower facility. Written over the image, it says, ‘A male wants to shower beside your 14-year-old daughter. Are you OK with that?’

September 28, 2014

'We don’t want to micromanage people’s lives and businesses. If you have a business, do you want the government to come in and tell you you need to hire somebody?'

A US congressman's office insists he does not support discrimination against LGBTI employees, although there's a recording of him saying otherwise.

At a early September town hall meeting, a Think Progress reporter asked Representative Robert Pittenger if he supported the Employee Non-Discrimination Act.

September 16, 2014

The country's UN ambassador says LGBTI rights 'go against our values'

A top Bangladeshi diplomat has said the Muslim country will oppose any recommendations on LGBTI rights at an upcoming UN conference on sexual and reproductive health and rights.

Abdul Momen, Bangladesh Permanent Representative to the UN, told the Dhaka Tribune, 'It goes against our values. Like many other countries including those Muslims and Christian, we opposed it.'

September 9, 2014

HRC President Chad Griffin: 'I am sorry for the times you have been underrepresented or unrepresented by this organization'

The Human Rights Campaign has formally apologized to the transgender community for putting their issues on the back burner in the past.

'I am sorry for the times you have been underrepresented or unrepresented by this organization,' HRC President Chad Griffin said over the weekend at the Southern Comfort Conference in Atlanta.

July 21, 2014

Order bans federal government and federal contractors from discriminating against emplyees based on sexual orientation or gender identity

US President Barack Obama signed an Executive Order today that protects employees of the federal government and of federal contractors from being discriminated based on their sexual orientation or gender identity.

July 18, 2014

Will protect employees of federal contractors from discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity

US President Barack Obama has chosen Monday (21 July) as the day he will make good on his promise to sign an executive order to prohibit discrimination against LGBTI employees.

The order will apply to an estimated 28 million people - one-fifth of the US workforce - who work for federal contractors and the federal government.

July 9, 2014

ACLU, Lambda Legal and Transgender Law Center among the groups to say 'inclusion of this provision is no longer tenable'

The Employment Non-Discrimination Act has lost the support of several leading LGBTI legal groups on Tuesday (8 July) because religious groups would be exempt from the long-stalled legislation.

The American Civil Liberties Union; Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders; Lambda Legal; National Center for Lesbian Rights; and Transgender Law Center issued a joint statement saying the current version of ENDA allows religious organizations to discriminate based on sexual orientation and gender identity.

July 1, 2014

Just days after a CNBC host speculated about his sexuality, Apple computers boss Tim Cook has given a send off to 5,000 Apple staff before they marched in the San Francisco Pride Parade

Apple Inc. CEO Tim Cook made a surprise appearance before the San Francisco Pride Parade on Sunday, paying tribute to those marching under the slogan ‘Apple Pride’ with 5,000 employees.

Cook posed for photos with Apple staff before the parade and tweeted a photo of Apple’s entry in the parade to his 536,000 followers on Twitter.

The 53-year-old attended the launch event for Apple's marchers just days after CNBC host Simon Hobbs worried he had outed Cook, asking why there were not more openly gay CEOs of Fortune 500 companies.

July 1, 2014

Makes surprise announcement during White House Pride reception

At a White House reception celebrating LGBTI pride, US President Barack Obama surprised attendees when he announced plans to sign an executive order protecting all federal workers from gender identity discrimination.

This is in addition to the executive order he plans to sign to protect employees of federal contractors from anti-LGBTI discrimination.

Obama's action is taking place as the US House of Representatives continues to stall the Employment Non-Discrimination Act already passed by the US Senate.

June 26, 2014

'Nearly 44 percent of Americans live in a state where same-sex couples can be legally married, and I believe this number will only continue to grow'

US Senator Susan Collins of Maine on Wednesday (25 June) became the fourth Republican member of the Senate to publicly endorse gay marriage.

'A number of states, including my home state of Maine, have now legalized same-sex marriage, and I agree with that decision,' Collins told the Bangor Daily News.

She follows in the footsteps of Republican Senate colleagues Rob Portman of Ohio, Mark Kirk of Illinois and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska.