Check out Barack Obama's record on LGBT issues: The first sitting American president to support full equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender Americans...
DELIVERED EQUALITY GOAL: HATE CRIMES
Fulfilling a campaign promise to pass Hate Crimes legislation protecting LGBTQ individuals, he signed the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act on October 28, 2009.
SUPPORTS EQUALITY GOAL: NON DISCRIMINATION
Barack Obama Quotes on Non Discrimination:"I believe the Employment Non-Discrimination Act should be expanded to include sexual orientation and gender identity. I sponsored legislation in the Illinois State Senate that would ban discrimination in employment on the basis of sexual orientation." [from the Human Rights Campaign's 2008 Presidential questionnaire]
As president, he has taken multiple steps to protect LGBT federal employees and others from discrimination. However, he did not push enough for passage of ENDA by 2010. Furthermore, he should sign the Executive Order banning discrimination by federal contractors on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity.
SUPPORTS EQUALITY GOAL: MILITARY --- REPEAL DON'T ASK, DON'T TELL
Keeping another campaign promise, he signed the legislation repealing Don't Ask Don't Tell, and he also signed the certification that the military was ready for LGB servicemembers.
The legislation, while repealing DADT, did not provide a non-discrimination clause for LGBT servicemembers. More work needs to be done.
While LGBT servicemembers still suffer discrimination, mostly because of the Defense of Marriage Act, the President authorized military chaplains to perform same-gender weddings.
SUPPORTS EQUALITY GOAL: MARRIAGE EQUALITY
President Obama is the first sitting President of the United States of America to support same-sex couples' right to marry. On May 9, 2012 he stated historically: “I’ve just concluded that for me personally it is important for me to go ahead and affirm that I think same-sex couples should be able to get married.”
In addition, in concurrence with the U.S. Attorney General, he determined that section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act was unconstitutional and therefore the Department of Justice will not defend it in court.
Furthermore, President Obama has endorsed the Respect For Marriage Act that repeals DOMA.
SUPPORTS EQUALITY GOAL: FREEDOM OF GENDER
Barack Obama Quotes on Trans-Inclusive ENDA: "I believe the Employment Non-Discrimination Act should be expanded to include sexual orientation and gender identity." [from the Human Rights Campaign's 2008 Presidential questionnaire]
On a breakthrough decision of the Equal Employment Commission, chaired by Obama's appointee Chai Feldlum, transgender people were deemed to be covered by Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
Here are some additional accomplishments:
- Banned job discrimination based on gender identity throughout the Federal government (the nation's largest employer)
- Hosted first-ever White House transgender policy meeting
transgender recommendations on the issuance of gender-appropriate
SUPPORTS EQUALITY GOAL: PROTECTING YOUTH
Barack Obama Quotes on Protecting LGBTQ Youth in 2008: "We need to do more in our schools to foster tolerance and an acceptance of diversity." [from the OutForObama website, 2008]
As president, Obama has:
SUPPORTS EQUALITY GOAL: SAME SEX PARENTING RIGHTS
Obama supports Same Sex Adoption
Barack Obama Quotes on Same Sex Adoption: "I believe there are too many children who need loving parents to deny one group of people adoption rights. A child will benefit from a healthy, loving home, whether the parents are gay or not."
[from the Human Rights Campaign's 2008 Presidential questionnaire
the Family and Medical Leave Act to cover employees taking unpaid leave to care for the children of same-sex partners.
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Check also: Comparison of Obama and Romney on LGBT equality
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