This bill would ban discrimination based on sexual orientation and/or gender identity in education, employment, housing, credit, and federal jury service. It would also prohibit discrimination (through changes to existing civil rights laws) in “public accommodations” and federal funding on the basis of gender, sexual orientation, and gender identity.
The definition of public accommodation under the Civil Rights Act of 1964 would be expanded to cover nearly every entity that offers goods, services, or programs — including retailers, banks, transportation, recreational centers, and healthcare providers, among others. For example, public restrooms count as a “public accommodation”, so it’d be illegal to deny a person access to a public restroom (or a locker room or dressing room) based on their gender identity.
Defendants against discrimination claims wouldn’t be allowed to use the Religious Freedom Restoration Act as a defense to alleged discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity.
Additionally, the bill would allow the Dept. of Justice (DOJ) to intervene in equal protection actions in federal court on account of sexual orientation or gender identity. It could initiate also cases against state and local governments for discrimination that occurs in publicly owned facilities other than schools and colleges.
Existing protected classes include race, color, religion, sex, disability status, and national origin.