Obama Signs LGBT Workplace Protections

On Monday, President Obama signed an executive order to combat LGBT discrimination in the workplace that will affect federal employees and contractors. The executive order also explicitly bans discrimination against transgender employees of the federal government. Bill Clinton signed an executive order in 1998 banning discrimination of federal employees based on sexual orientation. It is now illegal to harass or fire employees of federal contractors based on their sexual orientation or gender identity. There are 24,000 federal contractors employing 28 million workers, or about one-fifth of the American workforce. Before signing the executive order, Obama said “America’s federal contracts should not subsidize discrimination against the American people.” It is still legal in 32 states to fire or harass people for being LGBT.