Nondiscrimination Background Information: Why Everyone Should Be Treated Equally

Overview and Introduction to Nondiscrimination

All people should be treated fairly and equally by the laws of our state. But right now, it’s legal to fire someone, refuse them service at a business, or deny them housing simply because they are lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender. It’s time to update the law so that all people, including LGBT people, are protected from discrimination.

equalityffaDiscrimination is Wrong, No Matter Who It Affects:

  • LGBT people are our neighbors, co-workers, friends, and family. When it comes to being able to earn a living, having a place to live, or being served by a business or government office, they should be treated like anyone else and not be discriminated against.
  • Protecting people from discrimination, including LGBT people, is about treating others as we want to be treated. Even though we may have different beliefs, what’s most important is focusing on what we have in common—taking pride in our work, respecting our neighbors, and giving back to our communities.
  • All hardworking people should have the opportunity to earn a living and provide for themselves and their families. Nobody should have to live in fear of being legally fired for reasons that have nothing to do with their job performance. Employees should be judged on their qualifications, experience, and the job they do—nothing more, nothing less.

Good for Business and the Economy

For the majority of Fortune 500 companies – 75% according to the Human Rights Campaign – 17 states, and hundreds of local municipalities, comprehensive nondiscrimination policies have helped create diverse, productive workplaces that are competitive in a global marketplace. America’s largest employers know these policies are simply good for business.

Maintaining our state’s brand as a great place to do business is vital to our economy, and nondiscrimination laws are essential to that brand. To attract talented workers, spur entrepreneurial innovation, recruit investment, and build a thriving travel and tourism industry—we need to welcome all people and treat everyone fairly.

It’s time for our state to update our nondiscrimination law to protect all workers. These policies work for America’s leading businesses and employers, and they can work in our state, too.

Religious Freedom is Essential, But No One Should Face Discrimination

Freedom of religion is one of our most fundamental rights as Americans. That’s why it’s protected in the Constitution. But religious freedom doesn’t give any of us a right to discriminate or treat others unfairly. It’s about striking a balance. We can update state law to protect LGBT people and, at the same time, protect the constitutional rights of churches and religious organizations.

Treating Transgender Americans Fairly

Because so few people personally know a transgender person, it can be hard to understand what it means to be transgender. A transgender person is someone whose body doesn’t match who they know they are on the inside. Many transition and live as the gender they have always known themselves to be. Some transgender people, due to fear or because of unfair laws, are unable to be who they are. Like all of us, transgender people work hard to earn a living and meet their responsibilities. Updating the law will give people, including those who are transgender, a fair opportunity to provide for themselves and their family and build a better life.

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