Bills to Give LGBT People Civil Rights Protection Stuck in Committee
(Crystal A. Proxmire, Dec. 3, 2014)
Bipartisan efforts to expand the Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act did not get enough votes in a committee hearing today to make it out of committee to a full House of Representatives Vote.
After an hour-long public hearing – with half an hour each to the pro and con sides of the issue – Rep. Frank Foster closed the meeting by stating “It looks as if today we do not have support for either bill. So today, we will not be voting.”
Foster, a Republican from Petoskey, had introduced a bill that would include “sexual orientation” in the State’s nondiscrimination rules. Another bill, put forth by Rep. Sam Singh of East Lansing, would have included “gender identity and expression” as well.
Singh is still hopeful that the legislation could move forward by the end of the legislative session. “We’ve got two more weeks. My hope is people will find the ability, whether it’s through a discharge or a committee vote. I’m confident that if it was on the House floor, we’d have the 56 votes needed to pass this legislation,” he said.
Jay Kaplan, Staff Attorney for the ACLU of Michigan LGBT Project spoke in favor of including protections for transgender people. “The majority of the calls we receive concerning discrimination come from the transgender community who have been fired from a job, denied housing or public accommodation because of who they are,” he said.
Michigan AIDS Coalition
Michigan Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence (MCADSV)
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