HRC Hails Action to Provide Basic Fairness for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Ohioans; Urges State Senate to Follow Suit
COLUMBUS, OH–The Human Rights Campaign, the nation’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender civil rights organization, released a statement today on the Ohio House of Representatives voting on Tuesday 56 to 39 to approve the Equal Housing and Employment Act (HB 176), which would outlaw discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity in employment, public accommodations, housing, education, and credit practices. The bill now moves to the Ohio Senate for consideration. If passed by the state senate and signed into law, Ohio will become the twenty-second U.S. state to ban workplace discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and the thirteenth to ban such discrimination on the basis of gender identity.
“State Representatives in Ohio have taken historic action to advance the cause of equality for all Ohioans. This bill will make Ohio a freer and fairer place for its lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender residents,” said Human Rights Campaign President Joe Solmonese. “No one should face discrimination simply because of who they are. We applaud the many legislators who voted today for fairness and equality, House Speaker Armond Budish, our friends at Equality Ohio, and the HRC members in Ohio who worked hard to secure today’s historic House vote.”
The Human Rights Campaign is proud to have partnered with Equality Ohio and the Ohio Democratic Party in 2008 to elect a fair-minded majority to the Ohio House of Representatives and to have partnered with Equality Ohio this year to help secure today’s vote. HRC invested in key 2008 state legislative elections and worked this year to mobilize its members and supporters in Ohio to support the Equal Housing and Employment Act. These efforts have yielded thousands of contacts from Ohioans to their state representatives in support of the anti-discrimination bill.
“We are exceptionally pleased with today’s strong and historic bipartisan vote,” said Equality Ohio executive director Lynne Bowman. “Today is a great day for all Ohioans who support equality. We thank the Human Rights Campaign and its many Ohio members who helped make today’s vote a reality, and we urge Ohio senators to join their colleagues in the House and bring equal opportunity to all Ohioans.”
The Human Rights Campaign is America’s largest civil rights organization working to achieve lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender equality. By inspiring and engaging all Americans, HRC strives to end discrimination against LGBT citizens and realize a nation that achieves fundamental fairness and equality for all.