While a growing number of states are moving forward with marriage equality (Hawaii and Illinois could become the next two very soon), “there are no state laws in 29 states that explicitly prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation, and in 33 states that do so based on gender identity.”
Thankfully, on Monday the Senate will take up the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) to make such discrimination illegal from coast to coast. This will help protect the nation’s 8 million LGBT workers from employment discrimination, whether they live in Manhattan or Manhattan, Kansas.
The bill has the support of all 55 Senate Democrats and is co-sponsored by Republican Sens. Susan Collins (ME) and Mark Kirk (IL). Two other Republican Senators, Lisa Murkowski (AK) and Orrin Hatch (UT), voted for ENDA in committee, leaving it just one vote shy of the necessary 60 votes. Supporters are optimistic that at least one more Republican will support the bill when it comes to a vote next week.
As the infographic below demonstrates, Americans overwhelmingly support ENDA, including majorities of voters in every U.S. state, as well as majorities of Republicans, independents, and Democrats nationwide.