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Equality PA decries Trump/Sessions attack on LGBTQ equality

Today attorney general Jeff Sessions issued sweeping guidance instructing federal agencies to provide significant leeway to staff and government contractors and grantees seeking religious exemptions from federal laws, rules and regulation.

This license-to-discriminate guidance promotes widespread, state-sanctioned, taxpayer-funded discrimination. It invites taxpayer-funded federal agencies, government employees, and government contractors and grantees to discriminate as long as they cite a religious belief as the reason for doing it.

This license-to-discriminate guidance comes just one day after the Department of Justice announced they would no longer protect transgender Americans from workplace discrimination under Title VII. These unprecedented attacks are aimed at systematically eroding the legal equality and even the basic dignity of LGBT Americans, and make this administration the most anti-LGBT in recent decades.

This deliberate attempt to undermine the legal equality and dignity of LGBTQ people illustrates the urgent need for a comprehensive nondiscrimination law inclusive of sexual orientation and gender identity at the federal level.

“In America, we believe that the government should treat everyone equally under the law and not discriminate,” said John Dawe, executive director of Equality Pennsylvania. “When the government supports employees, contractors and grantees who deny services to taxpayers based on their religious beliefs, it is breaking its promise to treat all citizens equally. Public servants and federal contractors and grantees should serve the public and shouldn’t be allowed to pick and choose who they’re going to serve based on their religious beliefs.”

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