KALAMAZOO – Today, Governor Whitmer signed an Executive Directive banning discrimination based on sex, inclusive of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) Michiganders in state employment. The Directive does not extend to legislative employees or those who work in the private sector. As employers and policy makers, the House and Senate have the authority to extend non-discrimination policies to legislative staff and to put legislation to expand the Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act up for a vote. Legislative action would bring Michigan's laws in line with a previous ruling from the Michigan Civil Rights Commission which stated that discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity is discrimination based on sex, which is already prohibited by law.
In response to today’s announcement, state Rep. Jon Hoadley (D-Kalamazoo) issued the following statement:
"Governor Whitmer's executive directive sends a powerful message to business, nonprofit and legislative leaders that it is past time to make sure no person is denied equal opportunity because of who they are or who they love. The 100th Legislature must build on the governor's leadership and extend these freedoms to every Michigan resident by passing an expansion of the Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act to explicitly include a prohibition on discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity. No person’s civil rights should be contingent on where they live, where they work, who they are or who they love. We have the opportunity to make that happen — it's time to get to work."
Since joining the Legislature in 2015, Rep. Hoadley has served as the lead sponsor on legislation to expand the Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act to protect all Michiganders from discrimination in employment, housing and public accommodations.