HRC, Other Groups Support Non-Inclusive ENDA
The Human Rights Campaign has announced its support for a sexual orientation ENDA. This announcement follows a furious debate in the LGBT community over the inclusion of gender identity in the bill.
Tuesday, however, it appeared there are not the votes to pass an all inclusive version of ENDA and in an open letter to members of Congress, HRC, the NAACP, the National Education Association, the National Employment Lawyers Association, the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism, the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights, the American Federation of State, County, Municipal Employees and a number of other groups said they would support ENDA without gender identity.
The letter says that it is “beyond dispute that transgender employees are particularly in need of those protections. They face far more pervasive and severe bias in the workplace and society as a whole.”
But it goes on to say: “As civil rights organizations, however, we are no strangers to painful compromise in the quest for equal protection of the law for all Americans. From the Civil Rights Act of 1957 through the almost-passed District of Columbia House Voting Rights Act of 2007, legislative progress in the area of civil and human rights has almost always been incremental in nature. With each significant step toward progress, the civil rights community has also faced difficult and sometimes even agonizing tradeoffs. We have always recognized, however, that each legislative breakthrough has paved the way for additional progress in the future.
“With respect to ENDA, we take the same view.
“While we are greatly disappointed that the current version of ENDA is not fully inclusive, our sense of frustration in this case is directed at those who would clearly prefer to see no one from the gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender community protected at all.”
The House of Representatives is expected to vote on the sexual orientation ENDA this week. Its unclear if the bill has the votes to pass the House after weeks of some LGBT activists urging members of Congress to vote against a bill that does not include gender identity.