State Rep. Dan Frankel (D-Allegheny) is introducing legislation to prevent discrimination based on gender identity or sexual orientation for anyone who lives and works in Pennsylvania.
Frankel says that in the 21st century, such discrimination is unthinkable.
“Did you know that you can be fired for being gay in Pennsylvania? Did you know that a landlord can evict you for being gay in Pennsylvania? This is an embarrassment, this is a disgrace, and most importantly we cannot continue to tolerate or sanction discrimination in the state of Pennsylvania,” Frankel says.
In addition to Rep. Frankel’s bill in the House, State Sen. Larry Farnese (D-Philadelphia) also brought forward a similar bill in the Senate. The two joined together with other lawmakers to present a case for protection of LGBT citizens who face discrimination in employment and housing.
Both bills would add gender orientation and sexual identity to ethnicity, race, gender, age, etc. as things that cannot be discriminated against when looking for a home, acquiring credit, or applying for a job.
State Rep. Eugene Depasquale (D-York) spoke at the State Capitol where the bill will be introduced and says all people should hold equal rights that cannot be infringed upon.
“If someone is working hard, doing their job. Or if they are living in their apartment or a house, they should not be under threat of eviction or losing their home or losing their job because of sexual preference. That is simply un-American,” Depasquale says.
Farnese says an economic benefit can come from such legislation as Pennsylvania will be recognized as an open, accepting state where people will want to live.