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Reform Movement Coordinates Letter of Support from Sixty Faith Groups on Behalf of Employment Non-Discrimination Act

Reform Movement Coordinates Letter of Support from Sixty Faith Groups on Behalf of Employment Non-Discrimination Act

"ENDA is a measured, common sense solution that will ensure workers are judged on their merits, not on their personal characteristics like sexual orientation or gender identity. We call on you to pass this important legislation without delay". 

Contact: Sean Thibault or Katharine Nasielski
202.387.2800 | news@rac.org

WASHINGTON, D.C., July 8th, 2013 - In Anticipation of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committees mark-up of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, sixty faith groups - including ten national denominations _ sent the following letter of support to the members of the HELP committee and the Senate leadership:

"Dear Senator,

 

On behalf of our organizations, representing a diverse group of faith traditions and religious beliefs, we urge you to support the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) (S. 815). As a nation, we cannot tolerate arbitrary discrimination against millions of Americans just because of who they are. Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people should be able to earn a living, provide for their families and contribute to our society without fear that who they are or who they love could cost them a job. ENDA is a measured, common sense solution that will ensure workers are judged on their merits, not on their personal characteristics like sexual orientation or gender identity. We call on you to pass this important legislation without delay.

 

Many of our religious texts speak to the important and sacred nature of work - an opportunity to be co-creators with God - and demand in the strongest possible terms the protection of all workers as a matter of justice. Our faith leaders and congregations grapple with the difficulties of lost jobs every day, particularly in these difficult economic times. It is indefensible that, while sharing every American's concerns about the health of our economy, LGBT workers must also fear for their job security for reasons completely unrelated to their job performance.

 

Our faith traditions hold different and sometimes evolving beliefs about the nature of human sexuality and marriage as well as gender identity and gender expression, but we can all agree on the fundamental premise that every human being is entitled to be treated with dignity and respect in the workplace. In addition, any claims that ENDA harms religious liberty are misplaced. ENDA broadly exempts from its scope houses of worship as well as religiously affiliated organizations. This exemption - which covers the same religious organizations already exempted from the religious discrimination provisions of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 - should ensure that religious freedom concerns dont hinder the passage of this critical legislation.

 

We urge Congress to swiftly pass the Employment Non-Discrimination Act so that lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Americans have an equal opportunity to earn a living and provide for themselves and their families". 

 

Sincerely,

 

Affirmation - Gay and Lesbian Mormons

 

African American Ministers in Action

 

American Conference of Cantors

 

American Jewish Committee

 

Anti-Defamation League

 

The Association of Welcoming & Affirming Baptists

 

Believe Out Loud

 

Bend the Arc Jewish Action

 

Bnai Brith International

 

Brethren Mennonite Council for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Interests

 

Call To Action

 

Central Conference of American Rabbis

 

Dignity USA

 

Disciples Home Missions

 

The Episcopal Church

 

Equally Blessed

 

Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

 

The Evangelical Network

 

The Fellowship of Affirming Ministries

 

Friends Committee on National Legislation

 

Global Faith & Justice Project, Horizons Foundation

 

The Global Justice Institute

 

Hadassah, The Women's Zionist Organization of America, Inc

 

Hindu American Foundation

 

The Interfaith Alliance

 

Integrity USA

 

Islamic Society of North America

 

Jewish Council for Public Affairs

 

Jewish Labor Committee

 

Jewish Women International

 

Keshet

 

Methodist Federation for Social Action

 

Metropolitan Community Churches

 

More Light Presbyterians

 

Mormons for Equality

 

Mormons Building Bridges

 

Muslims for Progressive Values

 

Nehirim

 

New Ways Ministry

 

Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)

 

Progressive National Baptist Convention

 

The Rabbinical Assembly

 

Reconciling Works, Lutherans for Full Participation

 

The Reconstructionist Rabbinical Association

 

Reconstructionist Rabbinical College

 

Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice

 

Religious Institute

 

Sikh American Legal Defense and Education Fund (SALDEF)

 

Sojourners

 

Soulforce

 

Tru'ah

 

Union for Reform Judaism

 

Unitarian Universalist Association

 

United Church of Christ, Justice and Witness Ministries

 

United Church of Christ, Office for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Ministries

 

United Church of Christ, Wider Church Ministries

 

United Methodist, General Board of Church and Society

 

United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism

 

Women's Alliance for Theology, Ethics, and Ritual (WATER)

 

Women of Reform Judaism

 

Published: 07/08/2013