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Blog: Working Towards LGBT Equality

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Ensuring equal rights for LGBT Americans is a major priority of my service in Congress. Our country is founded on the principle that we do not deny rights to any of our citizens. From voting to end "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" to allow gays and lesbians to serve openly in the military, to voting to add sexual orientation and gender identity to the list of groups protected under federal hate crimes laws, I am proud of my record of promoting equality for LGBT people. Today, I am happy to announce that I have signed onto four more bills that would protect LGBT people from discrimination. The bills I have co-sponsored include:

Domestic Partnership Benefits and Obligations Act (H.R. 3485): allows federal employees in same-sex couples to give their partners health insurance, life insurance, government pensions, and other employment-related benefits and obligations that married heterosexual federal companies already receive.

Housing Opportunities Made Equal (HOME) Act (H.R. 3030): prohibits housing and credit discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity.

Freedom From Discrimination in Credit Act (H.R. 1488): prohibits discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity when extending credit.

Family And Medical Leave Inclusion Act (H.R. 2364): This bill would allow employees in the public and private sector to take job-protected unpaid leave to care for a seriously ill domestic partner or child, just as employees can already take unpaid leave to care for a spouse.

I also recently became the 101st member of the LGBT Equality Caucus. This caucus is committed to the extension of equal rights, the repeal of discriminatory laws, the elimination of hate-motivated violence, and the improved health and well-being for all LGBT people.

Going forward, I will continue to work with my colleagues to ensure all Americans are treated with dignity and respect.


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