Pete Buttigieg Just Unvieled a New Initiative that Would Usher in a Whole New Era for Queer America

While the Supreme Court determines LGBT discrimination in the work place, and ahead of the HRC (Human Rights Campaign) sponsored LGBTQ equality ahead of a CNN/HRC Town Hall on LGBTQ equality set for Thursday night. Pete Buttigieg unveiled a national initiative to improve the lives of LGBT Americans.
“‘Becoming Whole: A New Era for LGBTQ+ Americans,’ is a comprehensive policy prescription that will seek to bring Americans together to break down the walls of exclusion and secure full equality for the LGBTQ+ community. The plan covers issues of equality, health, youth and families, community, justice, honor, and leadership.

“Twenty years ago, an awkward teenager at St. Joe High, who didn’t know a single out LGBTQ+ student there, never would have imagined how far we would come,” said Buttigieg.

“And yet discrimination and the ever-present fear of it continue to govern aspects of LGBTQ+ people’s lives who question if they can be who they are and keep their job, or come out at school knowing they might be bullied for it. When I’m President, we will implement solutions bold enough to meet the challenges the LGBTQ+ community faces while bringing the American people together to understand that our freedoms are bound up in each other.”

“This starts with an intentional dismantling of the institutionalized discrimination confronting the LGBTQ+ community. I will press for and sign the Equality Act into law as soon as it hits my desk, making anti-discrimination the law of the land. I will deliver quality health care that is affordable, accessible, and equitable for all Americans, regardless of their sexual orientation, gender identity, or race. My Administration will put us on a path to end the HIV/AIDS epidemic—which disproportionately affects gay men and transgender women of color11—by 2030, and ban the dangerous practice known as “conversion therapy” once and for all. I will use more comprehensive strategies to end hate-based violence against LGBTQ+ people, especially Black transgender women; increase access to housing for LGBTQ+ Americans; and strengthen protections for LGBTQ+ immigrants and refugees.

 

For LGBTQ+ people, like for other marginalized groups, the political has always been extremely personal. This is why our policy is inspired by LGBTQ+ people’s stories: by the war that breaks out in the heart of a young person when they realize that a basic fact about them makes them more likely to be feared, and the immense joy that comes with finally knowing with certainty that you belong. Below we share the stories of some of these brave people.”

Under a Buttigieg Administration, LGBTQ+ individuals and communities will be supported in every aspect of their daily lives, from equitable health care to workplace protections to a new national mentorship program that will build up a sense of belonging among LGBTQ+ youth. As president, Buttigieg will ensure anti-discrimintation is the law of the land and work to put an end to the violence that is taking the lives of transgender Americans.

The former mayor of Tempe, Arizona, Neil G. Giuliano saidPete Buttigieg offers the most thoughtful and comprehensive plan for the advancement of LGBTQ+ people in our country that I have seen. And he knows implementing it will require not just his leadership as president, but an enhanced conversation across the nation and across generations so as to bring about full equality. The hearts and minds of the vast majority of Americans support full equality. As president, Pete Buttigieg will see to it that our laws and policies come to reflect the values we hold dear.”

Giuliano was first directly-elected openly LGBTQ+ mayor in the Unites States.
Buttigieg’s unveiling of his plan comes as the Supreme Court weighs whether employers can legally fire employees based on their sexual or gender orientation.
Although as Dawn Ennis at Forbes pointed out, “It’s already legal to be fired for being LGBTQ.The fact is, even before the sound of the gavel is heard this morning in those hallowed chambers, employers in 28 states can fire workers for no other reason than they are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or queer. And the official position of the U.S. government is, that’s okay.”

 

The Trump Administration’s policy varies from the Obama era in that its Justice Department is siding with the employers, and defending discrimination. It’s also at odds with its own Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, which has defended the interpretation that “sex” in Title VII protects victims of discrimination based on their gender identity as well as sexual orientation. This interpretation has been upheld in several federal court cases.

“A decision is expected by early summer 2020, right smack in the middle of the election,” Ennis wrote.

Read the comprehensive plan here.

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