Jan 13, 2013

Please Support the Virginia Non-Discrimination Act

The following is an open letter from Sen. Donald McEachin asking for your support for the Virginia Non-Discrimination Act.  You can reach the Equality Virginia petition at http://www.equalityvirginia.org/what-we-do/ending-discrimination/workplace-discrimination/support-sb701/.

 

Dear LGBT Caucus,

Let me first thank you for all your hard work on behalf of Democrats and causes we both hold dear. Your commitment and efforts for the Democratic Party have made a difference and I am pleased to be able to consider myself  part of your organization.

For the past several years, I have introduced the Virginia Non-Discrimination Act which would add prevention of discrimination against state employees for sexual orientation and gender identity to the list of discriminatory and, therefore, forbidden actions by the state. Last year, when he came to the Senate, Senator Ebbin and I joined together to submit this legislation. This year, I am again introducing the bill in partnership with Senator Ebbin. Unfortunately, this bill has an uphill fight in the rigid ideological atmosphere of our General Assembly.

But it is a fight worth fighting and one that I eagerly anticipate. This bill is just one small step towards ensuring that ALL Virginians have equal opportunity, justice and fairness. Ridding Virginia of prejudice and discrimination is a fight I am happy to have at any time.

However, I need your help.

  • Equality Virginia has started a petition in support of our Non-Discrimination Act (SB701).  Please sign the petition and forward it around to all your friends and get their signatures.
  • Write to your delegate and senator and ask them to support the bill.
  • When the bill is up in committee, please come and testify about your relevant experiences
  • Let me know of any incidents or people who demonstrate the importance of passing this legislation
  • Continue working as hard as you can to elect pro-equality candidates at every level

Together, I believe we can and will make a difference. I pledge to you that I will not stop fighting until this bill passes and until we can all be confident that Virginia is an open, welcoming place that recognizes there is no room for prejudice and discrimination of any kind within our Commonwealth.

Let me thank you again for all you have done and all I know you will continue to do. Please let me know of any way I can be helpful to you or of any opportunities for me to promote our mutual goals.

Sincerely,

A. Donald McEachin