Congresswoman Maloney Votes to Pass Historic Equality Act to End Discrimination Against All LGBTQ Americans

May 17, 2019
Press Release

WASHINGTON, DC – Today, Congresswoman Carolyn B. Maloney (D-NY), member of the LGBT Equality Caucus, voted to pass H.R. 5, the Equality Act, to ensure that all LGBTQ Americans are granted the full protections guaranteed by federal civil rights law. The Equality Act extends anti-discrimination protections to LGBTQ Americans with regard to employment, education, access to credit, jury service, federal funding, housing and public accommodations.

You can watch the Congresswoman’s speech on the House floor in support of the bill here.

Following passage of the bill, Rep. Maloney released the following statement:

“Today, we had a historic moment on the floor of the House and I was so proud to join 235 of my colleagues in voting to pass the Equality Act, sweeping new civil rights legislation that will prohibit discrimination against LGBTQ Americans in all walks of life. I have fought for equality for my entire career and this is one of the proudest moments of my career in public service.

“Being able to be your true self shouldn’t depend on where you live. All LGBTQ Americans deserve nothing less than full rights and equal protections under the law and that’s exactly what the Equality Act will provide. The Senate should immediately vote on this important bill and send it to the President’s desk.”

Fifty percent of the national LGBTQ community still live in states where, though they have the right to marry, they have no explicit non-discrimination protections in other areas of daily life. Only 21 states have explicit laws barring discrimination based on sexual orientation in employment, housing and public accommodations, and only 20 states have such protections for gender identity. In most states, a same-sex couple can get married one day and legally denied service at a restaurant, be fired from their jobs or evicted from their apartment the next. The Equality Act amends existing federal civil rights laws to create a nationwide standard that explicitly prohibits discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity.