The Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), co-sponsored by Illinois Senators Dick Durbin (D) and Roland Burris (D) was introduced Wednesday in the United States Senate.
The bill would add sexual orientation and gender identity to existing federal employment non-discrimination laws and protect lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender employees from workplace discrimination. Introduced in the Senate by Senators Jeff Merkley (D-OR), Susan Collins (R-ME) and Edward M. Kennedy (D-MA), it accompanies similar legislation in the House is co-sponsored by Congressman Mike Quigley (D-IL).
"Both Senators Burris and Durbin have long histories of supporting fairness and equality," said Rick Garcia, Director of Public Policy. "We are grateful to them and look forward to their leadership in getting ENDA passed."
While Illinois enjoys such state protection now, this bill covers many states which do not have protections in place for the LGBT community.
Senator Burris offered the following to ChicagoPride.com: ´"I am incredibly proud to co-sponsor the Employment Non-Discrimination Act in the United Senate, a bill that will not only protect individuals from employment discrimination based on their sexual orientation, but will also safeguard LGBT workers from discriminatory hiring, firing, promotion and compensation practices."