In recent months, we have seen an increase in discriminatory rhetoric and hate crimes across our country. Jewish synagogues and community centers have been threatened and vandalized. Undocumented immigrants have been demonized as dangerous criminals despite clear evidence to the contrary. President Trump, against the advice of the Secretary of Education, recently reversed Obama-era protections that permitted transgender students in public schools to use bathrooms that correspond with their gender identity. These sorts of discriminatory activities have no place in the vibrant, multicultural country we all call home.
Before I was elected to Congress, I had the honor of serving as the President of my local Synagogue, I witnessed first-hand the beauty in our country’s diversity and how community engagement strengthens America. That was in large part due to the culture of tolerance, acceptance, and the common desire to affect positive change for the greater good that permeated so much of the work we all did. Now that I have the privilege of representing all residents of NV’s third district, my commitment to standing up against discrimination in all its forms remains resolute.
That’s why I am proud to join as an original co-sponsor of the Equality Act. This bill would create a uniform federal standard protecting all LGBTQ Americans from discrimination. The legislation extends explicit civil rights protection to areas like education, employment, housing, and ensuring equality under the law. The legislation would make these protections more explicit and orderly, providing for clear and consistent civil rights protections for members of the LGBTQ community. This bill will go a long way to preventing future discrimination and affording people of every sexual orientation the rights and protections they deserve. I look forward to working with my colleagues in Congress in a bipartisan fashion to create a more equitable and welcoming society for our LGBTQ constituents.
Even if this law passes, I recognize that there is still work to be done, not just at the Federal level, but at the state and local level as well. I applaud the work being done in the Nevada legislature this session by Assembly members like Nelson Araujo to promote legislation at the state level to protect members of the LGBTQ community in Nevada. One law under consideration would mandate training, protocols, and processes in the foster care system that accommodate the needs of LGBTQ youth, a crucial bill as there are between 1.5 and 2 times as many LGBTQ youths living in foster care as LGBTQ youths living outside of it. Another would ban the abhorrent practice of conversion therapy by licensed psychologists which most national organizations and medical professionals say causes people to retreat from society, become depressed, and even suicidal.
No one should ever be made a second-class citizen because of who they love. As your biggest advocate in Washington, I am here to work for you, and make your voice heard. We still have a long way to go, but by coming together, we can achieve an America that is more open, more loving, and more tolerant
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