Congressman Gomez Votes to Pass Historic Equality Act
Washington, February 25, 2021
Tags: Civil Rights
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Congressman Jimmy Gomez (CA-34) voted to pass H.R. 5, the Equality Act. This legislation – of which Gomez is an original cosponsor – amends existing federal civil rights laws to explicitly prohibit discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity in employment, education, housing, credit, jury service, public accommodations, and federal funding. Upon passage, Congressman Gomez issued the following statement:
“Today, my Congressional LGBTQ+ Equality Caucus colleagues and I voted to pass the Equality Act, once again reaffirming that federal civil rights protections for our LGBTQ constituents are long overdue,” said Congressman Gomez. “Not only does this historic legislation provide critical safeguards from discrimination that LGBTQ individuals across the country both need and deserve, but it also reflects House Democrats’ shared and ongoing fight to secure justice and equal rights for all Americans no matter who they love. I now call on the U.S. Senate to follow our lead in the House by immediately passing this important bill and sending it directly to President Biden’s desk for his signature.”
Despite progress made at the federal level in recent years, many forms of discrimination against LGBTQ people persist. In 27 states, a person can be denied housing because of their sexual orientation or gender identity. LGBTQ people can also be denied access to education in 31 states, and the right to serve on a jury in 41 states.
In 2019, Congressman Gomez voted to pass the Equality Act in the 116th session of Congress, but the bill was blocked by then-Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY).
The Equality Act is endorsed by leading advocacy organizations, including the Human Rights Campaign, the NAACP, the Urban League, the American Civil Liberties Union, the National Women’s Law Center, the National Center for Transgender Equality, the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, the National Black Justice Coalition, the National Center for Lesbian Rights, the National LGBTQ taskforce, Lambda Legal, Family Equality Council, the National Partnership for Women and Families, the Transgender Law Center, Freedom for all Americans, SAGE, PFLAG, and the Center for American Progress.
For the text of the legislation, please click here.