ENDA Markup Postponed

Chairman George Miller of the House Education and Labor Committee temporarily postponed Wednesday’s mark up on the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) in order to finalize some legal and technical issues with the bill. A new date will be set after the Thanksgiving recess.

Attorneys and advocates from NCTE and other the LGBT organizations have been working closely with committee staff on the legal aspects of the bill; in fact, we’re talking with them daily. There are still a few technicalities that do need to be finalized before a successful mark up can be held. Those supporting the bill, including Chairman Miller, want to ensure that, once passed, ENDA will absolutely stand up in a court of law, and be as airtight as possible, so that even conservative anti-LGBT judges won’t find it easy to whittle away at ENDA.

Some of the questions that are being discussed are:

  • Double recovery, so people cannot recover damages under two different provisions of federal law at the same time, which is never allowed;
  • Attorneys fees;
  • Disparate impact (You can read more about the legalese of disparate impact in Harper Jean’s September blog entry: The Disparate Impact Non-Issue.)

Welcome to the world of Congressional scheduling. The flexibility to deal with scheduling issues like this is part of our work as is making sure that this is the best possible bill to protect LGBT people. Stay tuned for the new date for committee mark up.

We need to keep up the great work calling members of Congress. Wednesday is our national call-in day, so call the Capitol Switchboard at 202.224.3121 and ask to speak to your Representative (have your zip code handy and they’ll help identify your member of the U.S. House).

When you are connected with your Representative’s office, give your name and your city and then let them know: “I am calling in support of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (H. R. 3017/S. 1584), which will protect lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people from job discrimination. No one deserves to be fired from their job because of who they are. Please vote yes for ENDA.”

Thanks!

6 Responses to ENDA Markup Postponed

  1. Anonymous says:

    It is extremely interesting for me to read this article. Thanks for it. I like such themes and anything connected to this matter. I would like to read a bit more soon.

  2. Zoe Brain says:

    Any delay puts an ENDA vote right in the middle of mid-term elections. So that will be postponed, it's too controversial.After the elections, there won't be a sufficient fillibuster-proof majority.So we wait until after the next Republican administration, call it 14 years. 10 if Obama's a single-termer.Then we do this all over again. As we did in what, 1996? 14 years ago.Care to bet I'm wrong?

  3. Sandra Louise says:

    No bet, Zoe. You, like me, only bet on sure things and this bill is too much of a not sure thing.Mr Obama has pledged to sign an ENDA bill were it to cross his desk, and for which I am grateful. But, he has yet to do more than give simple rhetoric. He has not done any arm twisting or provided any guidance or any interest for that matter to get this, bill passed.Nor has he shown any interest in suspending DADT enforcement until it is repealed. His quote is something to the effect that it will come in its time when it is ready.Nor has he done anything for DOMA.I am very disappointed so far.I will be far too old to see our rights as human beings as already written in the Constitution of the United States to be fully recognized.I would eagerly eat my words, and a double helping of crow to be shown wrong, but I fear that may never be.-Sandy

  4. ShireGal says:

    Depressing thought – waiting 14 more years – let's see I will be in my late 70's then. Despite the ugly history and even though I am generally rather pestimistic, I think we might get something passed in the next 5 to 10 years. There are two many large corporations that are beginning to see the advantages of active recruitment and support of LGBT. For example, at a recent executive conference regarding LGBT in the workplace, one national company provided the following stats regarding LGBT impact to there compnay:−$641B in total buying power-Highest buying power per person of any minority group: $43K/person- 70% of LGBT consumers are more likely to purchase from a company that advertises directly to the LGBT communityor or is known to have LGBT friendly practices.Companies are starting to sit up and take notice – and act. When we get to a critical mass of major corporations who recognize and appreciate GLBT talents – congress and the senate will follow.I am more concerned with a jetison of "T" from GLBT

  5. Justin Tanis says:

    The important thing is for us to concentrate on getting ENDA passed now. There are lots of things we can all be doing, like calling our members of Congress at (202) 224-3121, signing a petition for ENDA, writing to your members of Congress, or paying them or their staff members a visit in DC or at their home offices. Let's tell them why we need this bill now! (our home page at http://www.TransEquality.org has links for the petition, letter writing and more). Thanks!

  6. ShireGal says:

    ENDA delay is disapointing but we have additional problems in river city. Take a look at the senate version of the health bill. One of the provisions is a new 5% tax on "cosmetic surgery" – guess how Uncle S classifies SRS? – Think they will be willing to give up a revenue source? That would add $825 to my next surgery. It would have cost me $2,000 for the surgery I just had.

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