Press Release

AFT’s Weingarten on President Obama’s Executive Order Protecting LGBTQ Employees from Discrimination

For Release: 

Monday, July 21, 2014


Michael Heenan
202/585-4371; Cell:202/577-3941


WASHINGTON— Statement of American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten on President Obama’s executive order protecting LGBTQ employees of federal contractors and the federal government from employment discrimination:

"For years—decades even—Congress has been stymied in partisan politics, unable or unwilling to do the right thing and pass nondiscrimination legislation for gay and transgender workers. Today, President Obama brought the LGBTQ community one step closer to real equality. The executive order—especially in omitting a general religious exemption—will ensure that, at the very least, gay and transgender federal contract workers are protected from on-the-job discrimination.

"The fact remains that we need comprehensive legislation at the federal level. The vast majority of Americans believe that such laws already exist. Why not make those beliefs a reality? As an educator, a union leader and a lesbian, I know that LGBTQ workers across the country are experiencing discrimination at work. These workers—and all workers—deserve respect and dignity."

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The AFT represents 1.7 million pre-K through 12th-grade teachers; paraprofessionals and other school-related personnel; higher education faculty and professional staff; federal, state and local government employees; nurses and healthcare workers; and early childhood educators.