Press

Task Force applauds Iowa governor’s signature on bill protecting LGBT Iowans from discrimination

Date: 
May 25, 2007

MEDIA CONTACT:
Roberta Sklar, Director of Communications
media@theTaskForce.org
646.358.1465

WASHINGTON, May 25  — Iowa Gov. Chet Culver signed a bill today prohibiting discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity in employment, public accommodations, housing, education and credit practices. On April 25, the Iowa House of Representatives passed the bill with a vote of 59–37 and the Iowa Senate approved that version later that day with a 34–16 concurrence vote.

Iowa is one of four states that passed nondiscrimination bills this year protecting members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community. Three states (Colorado, Iowa, Oregon) passed sexual orientation and gender identity/expression protections and Vermont passed a gender identity/expression nondiscrimination bill. The Colorado bill is awaiting signature from its governor, who has pledged to sign it.

The National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, Inc., is proud to have partnered with Equality Iowa, the statewide LGBT rights group, to pass this measure. The Task Force assisted in crafting the bill’s language and provided strategy throughout the legislative process. The Task Force applauds Equality Iowa, One Iowa, the Interfaith Alliance, the Iowa Safe Schools Task Force and all others who made this victory possible.

Statement by Matt Foreman, Executive Director
National Gay and Lesbian Task Force

“We thank Governor Culver for signing this historic measure into law. During his inaugural address, the governor spoke about creating ‘one Iowa, one unlimited future.’ His signature has brought Iowans one step closer to that reality. This victory marks a step toward full equality, and we applaud our Iowa partners and the many supportive lawmakers for their tremendous efforts.”


Statement from Sandy Vopalka, Board President
Equality Iowa

“This bill would have been impossible without the support, energy and time of the Task Force. Many people over the last 18 years have worked to pass this bill, some of them no longer with us, and their presence was felt during this entire process. For the first time in my life, I finally feel welcome in the state of Iowa.”

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The mission of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force is to build the grassroots power of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community. We do this by training activists, equipping state and local organizations with the skills needed to organize broad-based campaigns to defeat anti-LGBT referenda and advance pro-LGBT legislation, and building the organizational capacity of our movement. Our Policy Institute, the movement’s premier think tank, provides research and policy analysis to support the struggle for complete equality and to counter right-wing lies. As part of a broader social justice movement, we work to create a nation that respects the diversity of human expression and identity and creates opportunity for all. Headquartered in Washington, D.C., we also have offices in New York City, Los Angeles, Miami, Minneapolis and Cambridge.