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Chairman Nadler Statement on Introduction of the Equality Act

Washington, March 13, 2019

Washington, D.C. –Today, House Judiciary Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) spoke at a bicameral press conference introducing H.R. 5, the Equality Act, which would explicitly prohibit discrimination against the LGBTQ community.

Below are Rep. Nadler's full remarks, as prepared:

"I am proud to join my colleagues today to mark the introduction of the Equality Act, and I want to thank a distinguished Member of the Judiciary Committee, Congressman David Cicilline, for all of his efforts in crafting this landmark legislation.

"This bill would explicitly prohibit discrimination against the LGBTQ community and would ensure its full integration into all areas of American life, including in employment, housing, credit, education, public accommodations, federally funded programs, and jury service. It does this by, among other things, clarifying existing civil rights law to explicitly include coverage of sexual orientation and gender identity as forms of sex discrimination.

"Almost 50 years ago, patrons at the Stonewall Inn, an LGBTQ bar in my congressional district, said enough was enough. They said enough to police harassment and the mistreatment of the LGBTQ community, and they rose up—a historic moment in the fight for equality in our country.

"Today, we build upon the legacy of the people who fought for equality on that day, and of generations of LGBTQ advocates and activists since then, to add our voices in saying "enough is enough."

"Enough to the prejudice. Enough to the harassment and indignities. And enough to anti-LGBTQ discrimination in our laws and in our society.

"I am a proud original cosponsor of the Equality Act, and I pledge to do everything within my power as Judiciary Chair to promptly move this legislation.

"By passing the Equality Act, we will take a critical step forward in our efforts to end the invidious discrimination that LGBTQ people have suffered from for far too long."

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