Saturday, March 10, 2018

Federal Anti-LGBTQ Bill Filed

Senate Republicans have filed a Federal anti-LGBTQ religious exemptions bill that enables individuals, businesses & corporations that cite religious objections to marriage equality to discriminate against LGBTQ couples, seniors & their families. Senator Mike Lee of Utah reintroduced the so-called “First Amendment Defense Act,” (FADA) & the bill has 21 co-sponsors & already has the full support of the Trump White House. The bill is similar to HB1523 the anti-LGBTQ religious exemptions bill that went into effect in Mississippi last year. Sarah Kate Ellis, President & CEO of GLAAD stated, “America was founded on the freedom of religion & this shared value continues to be critical to our nation’s success, but it does not give people the right to impose their beliefs on others, to harm others, or to discriminate. While President Trump & the Senate Republicans behind this bill are pushing for discriminatory legislation, the LGBTQ community will not be silent & continue to protect the hardworking LGBTQ American families who would be placed in direct harm by this unjust bill.” The so-called "First Amendment Defense Act” especially puts our LGBTQ elders lives at risk since it would permit federally funded aging providers to discriminate against them when they are most in need of care whether they are in long-term care or have a caregiver at home. This hateful bill is also in total contradiction of the Public Religion Research Institute (PRRI) which showed that a majority of Americans oppose anti-LGBTQ religious exemption laws. PRRI also found that 72% of Americans support laws that protect LGBTQ people from discrimination in employment, housing & public accommodations. This includes six out of ten (60%) Republicans & 81% of Democrats.
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