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Maloney, Highest-Ranking Out LGBTQ Member of the House, Helps Pass the Equality Act

Feb 25, 2021
Press Release

Maloney, Highest-Ranking Out LGBTQ Member of the House, Helps Pass the Equality Act

Washington, D.C. – Today, Representative Sean Patrick Maloney (NY-18), the highest-ranking out LGBTQ member of the House of Representatives and Co-Chair of the Congressional LGBTQ Equality Caucus, helped pass the Equality Act, landmark bipartisan legislation that would extend federal civil rights protections to the LGBTQ community.

“While my husband and I are protected in New York State, LGBTQ Americans in 27 states can still be evicted, kicked out of a restaurant, or denied a loan based on who they love or their gender identity. Today, Congress took a major step toward ensuring that LGBTQ Americans receive the civil rights we are due,” said Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney. “I am proud to have helped pass this landmark legislation in the House and will fight to get it through the Senate and signed into law under the Biden-Harris Administration.”

Federal protections in the Civil Rights Act and other federal civil rights laws currently do not apply to sexual orientation or gender identity, forcing LGBTQ Americans to rely on a patchwork of state laws to protect themselves from discrimination in employment, education, housing and public accommodation.

The Equality Act would extend existing civil rights protections in the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Fair Housing Act, the Equal Credit Opportunity Act, the Jury Selection and Services Act, and other federal employment laws to cover sexual orientation and gender identity. Currently, those laws protect people from discrimination based on race, color, national origin, and in most cases, sex, disability, and religion.

Representative Maloney is an original cosponsor of the Equality Act.