NAACP endorses Equality Act

The United States Capitol in Washington, D.C. (Photo via Pixabay)

WASHINGTON — On Friday, the NAACP endorsed the Equality Act, the federal LGBTQ anti-discrimination bill that was introduced last week.


“We support what it does — and we support it now,” Hilary Shelton, the organization’s D.C. bureau director, told NBC News on Friday. “It’s important that it gets through.”

Shelton said the group had previously endorsed the bill in meetings with two of its sponsors, Sen. Jeff Merkley, D-Ore., and Rep. David Cicilline, D-R.I.

The NAACP, which was founded in 1909, was instrumental in the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which banned discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex and national origin; enforced desegregation of schools and the right to vote; and required equal access to public places and employment.

Shelton told NBC OUT that, “We believe the same protections that we have worked for so hard over the 110 years of the NAACP should be extended to all Americans, particularly members of the LGBTQ community.”

This isn’t the first time the NAACP has supported the LGBTQ community. The group had supported the LGBTQ protections in the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) and in the Affordable Care Act. It also called for a boycott when North Carolina passed a restrictive bathroom law against transgender people in 2017.

NBC OUT reported that the NAACP’s support had been questioned after Gregory T. Angelo, former president of the Log Cabin Republicans, implied the NAACP didn’t support the bill in a column stating his own opposition to the Equality Act.

More from NBC OUT:

Angelo stated that “African American legacy civil rights groups are absent” from an “exhaustive list” of organizations supporting the Equality Act. He specifically cited the NAACP.

Angelo did not immediately respond to a request for comment.



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