US President Barack Obama on Thursday urged Congress to pass legislation to ban anti-LGBT discrimination in the workplace, saying “I want to sign that bill.”
Obama said discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity was wrong, and must be changed, noting that in thirty states people can be sacked for those reasons, and saying that Congress should end workplace discrimination “now and forever”.
Referring to the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, which would prohibit workplace discrimination on the basis of actual or perceived sexual orientation or gender identity by employers, Obama urged Congress to pass it.
“We need to get that passed. I want to sign that bill. We need to get it done now,” said Obama at a reception in the White House.
At the reception, Obama noted some recent moves forward for LGBT people, including anti-hate crimes legislation, but said there was more to do, reports the Huffington Post.
“Part of the reason we’re here is because we know we’re not done yet,” he said.
Other similar bills to the Employment Non-Discrimination Act are pending at committee stage in the US House and Senate.
Also commenting on the bill, Florida Senator Marco Rubio said in an interview that he did not think LGBT people deserved “special protection” against being sacked, in addition to protections against discrimination based on race or gender.