Gay rights advocates to push Obama on discrimination ban
Gay rights activists refuse to sit on their laurels after winning multiple ballot measures on Election Day, instead planning to push President Obama to sign an executive order to protect employment rights, reported The Hill.
The order in question would ban federal contractors from employment discrimination against gay or transgender people.
The hope is that Obama’s signing of the order could also prompt Congress to pass legislation barring any employer from discriminating on those grounds. Lobbyists, however, have said GOP control of the House poses a barrier to getting such a law on the books.
“I do think it helps pave the way for a fully inclusive [Employment Non-Discrimination Act]. … It is the way that the government puts its imprimatur on what’s important and makes a difference in people’s lives. The president would be saying it’s important not to discriminate,” said the legislative director for the Human Rights Campaign, Allison Herwitt.
Advocates also plan on hopping into the tax debate, as they want equality for same-sex couples regarding how health benefits are taxed. And some groups will push for legislation offering military spouse benefits to same-sex couples.
While such moves may appear to offer piecemeal solutions to such couples, the Supreme Court will decide this month whether to hear arguments challenging the Defense of Marriage Act, the federal ban on same-sex marriage.
[Image via AFP]