Lawmakers in DE pushing discrimination bill
DELAWARE.- Inclusivity. That’s what many Delaware democratic lawmakers are pushing for with A bill currently making its way through the Delaware General Assembly.
The Johnson Bill would make the definitions of sexual orientation, gender identity, and disability consistent throughout the state code and with federal law. “Making sure these terms are consistently used throughout the code is overdue and I’m really glad we’re tackling it now. I understand there’s a lot going on nationwide with other initiatives, but this is what I think is best for Delawareans,” said Senator (D) Kyle Evan Gay.
Sexual orientation was defined in the state’s non-discrimination laws in 2009 as quote -“exclusively means heterosexuality, homosexuality, or bisexuality.”
House Bill 155 would remove “exclusively means” from the various sections of code and replace the phrase with “includes” to be more inclusive regarding how sexual orientation is defined.
But some feel the revisions could allow the potential of some to abuse the law. ” If you want to do this, you have to do something that establishes that its genuine change and not just for the convenience of the moment,” said Representative (R) Richard Collins.
Despite concerns, I’m told that support has come from members of the community and from those on opposite sides of the aisle. “I not only heard this from constituents and others, I heard from my colleagues. So I just think bills like this how important it is that are elected officials represent Delawareans,” said Sen. Evans Gay.
The bill has already passed the House and is now in the Senates Elections and Government Affairs committee.