No Right to Discriminate, Protect LGBTQ Workers Now
Statement by Rea Carey, Executive Director of the National LGBTQ Task Force
(October 8, 2019, Washington, DC) – At the LGBTQ workers’ rights rally on the steps of the United States Supreme Court, National LGBTQ Task Force Executive Director Rea Carey gave these remarks:
“The stakes in the cases being argued today at the Supreme Court could not be higher. Today is about whether the federal government will strip away the rights of transgender people across federal law. These cases are about whether it is legal to discriminate against a worker because of who they are or who they love. And, although these cases are about employment, the implications are far reaching for LGBTQ people – including our ability to have housing, healthcare and an education.
“These cases are about whether a boss gets to decide what it means to be ‘a man’ or ‘a woman.’ Does the fact that I am wearing pants make me less of a woman? Does my short haircut make me less of a woman? Does the fact that I’m married to another woman make me less of a woman? Who decides what makes me or you woman enough? or man enough? or human enough? Your boss? Your doctor? Lawmakers? The truth is your gender identity and expression should only be defined by you. And, non-conformity to someone else’s stereotypes should never be allowed to be the reason you are fired from a job. For those of you here today who are straight, these cases are about you too. Sex stereotyping is sex discrimination.
“These three cases will have a major impact on whether we have the opportunity to live our lives fully – to be all of who we are all of the time.
“If your job relocates you to a state without explicit protections, you deserve to be protected.
“If you have to be moved to a hospital in a county that does not have explicit protections, you shouldn’t have to wonder whether your life will still be saved. You deserve to be protected.
“If you decide to go to a different college in a state without explicit protections you shouldn’t have to worry that you will be kicked out because you hold your partner’s hand. You deserve to be protected.
“We are all here today to say ‘no’ to discrimination against transgender, lesbian, bisexual, gay, or queer people. We deserve the same protections at work, at the hospital, when we seek an education, or apply for an apartment.
“We deserve to be protected. Today, we have come together to say loud enough for the justices of the United States Supreme Court to hear us! There should be no right to discriminate.”
Contact: Sarah Massey
Communications Director, National LGBTQ Task Force