June 1, 2021
Press Release
Beginning of Pride Month underscores importance of legislation like The Equality Act, which passed in the House of Representatives earlier this year

(Rochester, N.Y.) – Today, as America marks the beginning of Pride Month, Congressman Joe Morelle renewed his push to enact The Equality Act and finally ensure all Americans are afforded the same essential human rights, regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity. The legislation, which Rep. Morelle co-sponsors, was passed by the House of Representatives earlier this year but has yet to be taken up by the Senate.

“No one should ever be discriminated against because of who they are or who they love—and it is shameful that in 2021 the LGBTQ+ community is still fighting for the basic protections they deserve,” said Congressman Joe Morelle. “This Pride month, we must not only recognize and celebrate the important contributions of our LGBTQ+ community but recommit to ending the discrimination they face all too often. The Equality Act, which I’m proud to co-sponsor, would mark a critical step forward in our efforts to fulfill our foundational promise of endowing all people with the same equal rights and opportunities.”

The Equality Act (H.R. 5), which passed in the House of Representatives on February 25, 2021, would amend the Civil Rights Act to explicitly prohibit discrimination on the basis of  sexual orientation and gender identity in education, employment, housing, credit, federal jury service, public  accommodations, and the use of federal funds.

Currently, a majority of states do not have laws that explicitly bar discrimination against members of the LGBTQ+ community, creating a patchwork of protections that leave too many Americans at risk of being evicted from their apartment, fired from their job, or kicked out of a restaurant simply because of who they are.

Rep. Morelle also co-sponsors additional legislation to support and uplift the LGBTQ+ community, including H.R. 1379, the Protecting LGBTQ Youth Act, which would expand programs that prevent and treat child abuse that lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender youth face; and H.R. 2328, which would make it illegal for Medicare funds to be used for conversion therapy.

“During Pride Month and every month, I will always stand as an ally to the LGBTQ+ community and continue to be a strong advocate for opportunity, dignity, and equality for all.” added Rep. Morelle.