Obama Drafting Executive Order Targeting LGBT Workplace Discrimination

It's still legal to fire workers for being LGBT in 32 states


In a move that could affect up to 16 million workers, President Obama has asked his staff to draft an executive order that would ban employers from discriminating against LGBT employees of federal contractors.

"Today, millions of Americans in most states in the country go to work every day knowing they could lose their jobs simply because of who they are or who they love," a White House official told the Huffington Post. "No current federal law adequately protects lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) workers from employment discrimination. That's why the President has long supported federal legislation to explicitly prohibit employers from discriminating on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity."

Yesterday's announcement, which comes in advance of Obama's appearance at a Democratic National Committee LGBT Gala in New York City, sends a clear message of impatience with Congress, which has failed to push forward any LGBT non-discrimination legislation--which Obama first promised to sign during his 2008 campaign.

"Unfortunately Congress has been paralyzed to act in this regard," said Richard Socarides, a Democratic strategist and President Bill Clinton's former advisor on gay rights. "The Senate passed an ENDA bill, it stalled in the House. It looks like at best we will have a divided Congress for two more years at least. So that ENDA bill is going nowhere and I think the president was forced to act and showed a lot of courage in doing so."

Vice President Joe Biden may have hinted at the order last month, when he told the Huffington Post that he couldn't see any negative consequences to taking executive action on the issue. However, the administration didn't make any direct moves until Monday.

Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), who sponsors the Senate's ENDA bill, praised Obama's announcement as a potentially historic moment, adding that most people don't know that it's still legal to fire someone based on their sexual orientation or gender identity in 32 states.

While there's no timeline yet for signing the order, HuffPost's White House contact said that it would "build upon existing protections, which generally prohibit federal contractors and subcontractors from discriminating in employment decisions on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, or national origin."

In the meantime, here are ten states that embrace their LGBT workers.

Add a Comment

*0 / 3000 Character Maximum


Filter by:

once an A hole always an A hole.

December 22 2014 at 3:01 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

We need more protection for all workers, My wife worked for winn-dixie stores in Ocala Florida for over 13 years with no problems then on 8-13-2014 her boss called her into the office and told her she was being let go I beleave it was becauce she had been there for 13 years and was making to much money and was getting insurance and a 401K I feel they wanted to bring in part time workers and cut there cost. This must be part of winn-dixie's new policy there needs to be some sort of protection for a worker that puts in 13 years of there life working for a company only to be treated like dirt.

August 18 2014 at 6:45 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

This is so important of an issue when Rome is burning to make this an issue?
obama can't do anything but ruin business, and ruin the economy and ruin freedom of thought, choice and the first amendment.

June 19 2014 at 12:50 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to llhuberarchitect's comment

President Obama did not make this an issue...you did with your sick comments and faux news thoughts.
Crawl back in bed with the rest of your ilk...America says good riddance to prejudice and discrimination against anyone!!!

December 22 2014 at 10:04 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

were on verge of word war 3 and this leaders is meeting with gays and transvestites .worried about bullshit when our country is stagnate.i guess this weeks major topic will be redskins name offending a few.wake up AMERICA before its to late.Someone get a message to O BAMA ON GOLF COURSE THAT AMERICA IS BROKE.We could use some guidance on important matters not bullshit.

June 19 2014 at 11:01 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to rjenk97202's comment

Since when is discrimination not an important matter? Let it be your spouse, child, parent, or other loved one and see how much bullshit it is, as you suggest. Sick!

December 22 2014 at 10:01 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

o bama start with Jz and lyrics in his songS,if there not racial SLURS then your ass not black.

June 19 2014 at 10:44 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

What about the older workers where is their support? I am 56 years old and have been looking for a job for 8 months. I have been discriminated against because of my age. I am very healthy, active and still have a child in high school and first year college. I WANT TO WORK AND HAVE SENT OUT OVER 1000 resume and applications did my follow-ups, had interviews. When I ask what the other candidate had over me the comments are, we are impressed with you and your background but decided on another candidate. Where is the government support for us? They took the unemployment away from those who really try hard to find work.
Also, have dead beat ex who owes over $35,000 how come the government can’t find him? Why Child support doesn’t do their job and the police if a warrant is out for the person. They know everything that American citizens and others are doing….
Let’s get real America!!

June 18 2014 at 9:46 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Judging from posts herin on this topic, a majority of Americans support discrimiation, except of course when it can affect them, personally. If a person is qualified to do a job, what they do after work should not be of concern. Ladies, gentlemen, do watch what you say in front of your male barber/hairdresser, you might just go home "accidentally" with purple hair and a big bald spot!

June 18 2014 at 9:42 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

He's well on his way to being a dictator

June 18 2014 at 6:26 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

My diabetic husband had been out of work for almost 6 months (due to Obamacare, layoffs) & had bypass surgery, & I really needed that job! Yet they acted like they were afraid I'd be more qualified to take THEIR job!

June 18 2014 at 4:56 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I figured this out, when the Dublin, CA store manager, kept promising me an interview, " as soon as he got a chance." I checked in with him every other week, like the website told me to. Hubby called him, on cell phone, 1 day & asked where he was in hiring, & the Out House Mouse replied, "We've been interviewing candidates, but haven't selected 1 yet." So I called him on our house phone, & he told me he wasn't hiring, when he was.

June 18 2014 at 4:44 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Search Articles

Picks From the Web