With the introduction of the Equality Act (H.R.5) by Rep. David Cicilline (RI-1) and Sen. Jeff Merkley (OR) today, Executive Director Brian K. Bond and PFLAG National Board Member Dr. Edith Guffey call on Congress to pass this necessary civil rights legislation. PFLAG represents hundreds of thousands of LGBTQ+ people, parents, families, and allies across the country.
The PFLAG community represents people who are most impacted by the current legal patchwork of discrimination protections that affect whether LGBTQ+ people have fair access to housing, banking, health care, work, voting, jury service, public accommodation and more. The Equality Act would establish a minimum standard of protection throughout the U.S. for all LGBTQ+ people and shore up civil rights protections for people of faith, people of color, women, and people with disabilities.
Statement from Dr. Edith Guffey, Conference Minister of the Kansas-Oklahoma Conference of the United Church of Christ and PFLAG National Board Member:
“The concerns of people of faith in considering the Equality Act have deep roots. For me, my greatest concern is that without the Equality Act, many of God’s children live in places in this country where they can be refused food, clothing, shelter, education, and so much more, simply for being the person that they are: a beloved child of God, just as they are. As a mother of a transgender adult child, who holds LGBTQ+ people close to my heart, I am bolstered and led by my faith in asking members of Congress to take action to pass the Equality Act now.”
Statement by Brian K. Bond, Executive Director of PFLAG National:
“For PFLAGers and LGBTQ+ people around the country, navigating life means navigating a patchwork of legal protections that can determine whether you can access basic rights where you live or visit. The Equality Act would change that. That is why we are calling on Members of the House of Representatives and Senators to pass the Equality Act.
“In 14 states right now, the rights of children to access healthcare or play school sports are in jeopardy because as transgender people, their right to protection from discrimination in health or education is not protected. In 21 states, a person who is LGBTQ+ can be denied service by a business, housing or food by a shelter, healthcare by a doctor, access to banking to buy a house or a car, and much more—simply for who they are. The same is true in these states for people of faith, for people of color, for women, and for people with disabilities. Without the Equality Act, discrimination reigns in this country where we pledge liberty and justice for all.
“President Biden has affirmed his support of the Equality Act and remains ready to sign. PFLAG calls on Congress to pass the Equality Act now.”