CHICAGO – Equality Illinois on Monday reacted to the news that the president would not rescind the protections for LGBTQ employees and contractors.
While we are relieved to hear that President Trump will not, with a single stroke of his pen, create a right to discriminate against LGBTQ Americans in the workforce of the federal government or federal contractors, we remain deeply concerned about the possibility that his administration will create gaping holes in other protections.
We stop short of congratulating the president for this act of supporting LGBTQ equality since we hold it as a basic expectation that all of our elected officials should insist on the fair treatment of all employees, including LGBTQ employees. And, we are deeply aware of the many ways the Trump administration could roll back equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer Americans.
In particular, we insist Trump oppose any efforts to legalize discrimination by federal agencies, employees, and contractors against LGBTQ people under the false guise of “religious freedom.” We are also watching with vigilance to ensure that the Trump administration maintains the Department of Education and Department of Justice guidance that ties federal funding to schools to the requirement that they have policies affirming the basic human dignity of transgender students. We also expect that other federal departments retain their LGBTQ-affirming policies launched during the Obama administration.
We remind the president that we, as advocates for the LGBTQ community, stand with so many other groups, including immigrants, refugees, Muslim Americans, and women, who are facing harsh and wrong-headed policies that are contrary to American values of fairness and the freedom to live life on our own terms. We hold fast to the truth that there can be no freedom when all are not free. We pledge our commitment to fighting for an Illinois–and America–where all residents can live life to their fullest potential.
Brian C. Johnson
CEO of Equality Illinois