Yesterday, President Trump affirmed that he will keep President Obama's executive order that created new workplace protections for gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender federal employees and contractors. This is welcome news following rumors that he was poised to repeal these important protections.
But, Trump has also pledged to support measures that allow anyone to exempt themselves from nondiscrimination laws if the claim their discriminatory act is based on a "religious belief or moral conviction" that (1) marriage is or should be recognized as the union of one man and one woman, or (2) sexual relations are properly reserved to such a marriage. (see the full text below)
We will keep you updated as we learn more about forthcoming executive orders. In the meantime, we are also working at the local and statewide levels to ensure protections for the LGBTQ community. Help us move equality forward in Florida by visiting: http://www.eqfl.org/volunteer_opportunities
Text of the First Amendment Defense Act:
Prohibits the federal government from taking discriminatory action against a person on the basis that such person believes or acts in accordance with a religious belief or moral conviction that: (1) marriage is or should be recognized as the union of one man and one woman, or (2) sexual relations are properly reserved to such a marriage.
Defines "discriminatory action" as any federal government action to discriminate against a person with such beliefs or convictions, including a federal government action to:
- alter the federal tax treatment of, cause any tax, penalty, or payment to be assessed against, or deny, delay, or revoke certain tax exemptions of any such person;
- disallow a deduction of any charitable contribution made to or by such person;
- withhold, reduce, exclude, terminate, or otherwise deny any federal grant, contract, subcontract, cooperative agreement, loan, license, certification, accreditation, employment, or similar position or status from or to such person; or
- withhold, reduce, exclude, terminate, or otherwise deny any benefit under a federal benefit program.
Requires the federal government to consider to be accredited, licensed, or certified for purposes of federal law any person who would be accredited, licensed, or certified for such purposes but for a determination that the person believes or acts in accordance with such a religious belief or moral conviction.
Permits a person to assert an actual or threatened violation of this Act as a claim or defense in a judicial or administrative proceeding and to obtain compensatory damages or other appropriate relief against the federal government.
Authorizes the Attorney General to bring an action to enforce this Act against the Government Accountability Office or an establishment in the executive branch, other than the U.S. Postal Service or the Postal Regulatory Commission, that is not an executive department, military department, or government corporation.
Defines "person" as any person regardless of religious affiliation, including corporations and other entities regardless of for-profit or nonprofit status.