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Business groups urge Congress to combat LGBTQ discrimination in workplace

Business groups urge Congress to combat LGBTQ discrimination in workplace

Business groups are urging Congress to pass the Equality Act, a piece of federal legislation to ensure federal protections for LGBTQ individuals.

A total of 44 business groups, including the National Association of Manufacturers, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the American Medical Association, sent a letter to congressional leaders on Wednesday advocating for “efforts to combat discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity in the workplace.”

“We believe an appropriately-tailored federal standard would complement our members’ ongoing work to promote equal opportunity in the workplace,” the letter reads. “A clear federal standard would better enable individuals to succeed based on their abilities and qualifications to perform a job.”

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Rep. David CicillineDavid Nicola CicillineThe Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Capital One - Tensions rise with Trump, Barr Maloney to lead Democrats' campaign arm Hillicon Valley: GOP chairman says defense bill leaves out Section 230 repeal | Senate panel advances FCC nominee | Krebs says threats to election officials 'undermining democracy' MORE (D-R.I.) and Sen. Jeff MerkleyJeff MerkleyDemocrats introduce legislation to strike slavery exception in 13th Amendment Overnight Defense: Defense bill among Congress's year-end scramble | Iranian scientist's assassination adds hurdles to Biden's plan on nuclear deal | Navy scrapping USS Bonhomme Richard after fire Supreme Court declines to hear case challenging unlimited super PAC fundraising MORE (D-Ore.) will introduce the bill in their respective chambers later on Wednesday, with more than 230 representatives and 46 senators expected to co-sponsor the measure. The bill also has 161 corporate supporters including Apple, Amazon, Google, Facebook and Twitter, according to CNBC.

The Equality Act expands the Civil Rights Act of 1964 to ban discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.  The bill was previously introduced in 2015 and 2017, but never made it out of committee in the Republican-controlled Congress.

The bill is expected to easily pass the Democratic-controlled House but faces hurdles in the Republican-controlled Senate.

Equality Act Trades Letter 3-13-2019 by blc88 on Scribd