UPDATE: Senate passes ENDA by vote of 64-32


UPDATE: the Senate has passed ENDA by a vote of 64-32! Now it moves to the House of Representatives where leaders have been resistant to bringing the bill to a vote.

Help SAVE Dade keep up the pressure on the House by making a donation today.

With your help we can send the message that the House shouldn't stand in the way of equality. We must keep up the fight.

SAVE Dade has sent letters thanking Senator Bill Nelson and Representatives Illeana Ros-Lehtinen, Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Joe Garcia, and Fredrica Wilson for their co-sponsorship of the Employee Nondiscrimination Act (ENDA), which cleared a key procedural hurdle in the U.S. Senate on Monday.

SAVE also sent a letter to Senator Marco Rubio urging him to reconsider his opposition and a letter to Representative Mario Diaz-Balart, who has not yet announced a public position, requesting support for the legislation.

CLICK HERE to tell Senator Rubio to VOTE YES on ENDA. CLICK HERE to tell Rep. Diaz-Balart to VOTE YES on ENDA.

ENDA will provide LGBT employees with protections to ensure that employers, employment agencies and labor unions do not use sexual orientation or gender identity as a basis for hiring, promotion, or firing.

In order to gain bipartisan support, the proposed legislation includes specific provisions prohibiting quotas and preferential treatment based on sexual orientation or gender identity. It also exempts small businesses and religious organizations from coverage.

Additionally, it allows businesses to enforce “reasonable dress and grooming standards,” so long as it also allows employees who have undergone, or are undergoing, gender transition to use the standards applicable to that gender.

Employment discrimination has devastating effects on the lives of LGBT people and their families.  It impacts both their livelihoods and their abilities to contribute to their communities.  On a national level, it hurts the economy by unnecessarily shrinking the pool of qualified talent.

Most Fortune 500 companies have adopted policies to ensure that their managers do not discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity when making employment decisions.

These companies’ leaders, such as Apple CEO Tim Cook, know that when companies act to ensure that their employment decisions are based on merit and talent and not on discriminatory animus, the shareholders and other financial backers of the companies benefit.

Although many states and municipalities have laws banning such employment discrimination, the list includes neither Florida nor Miami-Dade County. Congress needs to pass ENDA, both as a matter of fundamental fairness for LGBT employees and as a business necessity for the U.S. economy.

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