Defend LGBTQ Rights

WHEREAS, Pride at Work (P@W) strives to be a unifying force for all LGBTQ union members, LGBTQ-identified workers, and their allies. We recognize that all workers should experience employment security, fair promotions, and benefits regardless of race, religion, age, ability, sexual orientation, or gender expression/identity; and

WHEREAS, it is one of P@W’s duties to help eliminate discrimination and harassment in the workplace and support the rights of our fellow brothers and sisters. One of the biggest targets of such mistreatment in the United States remains the LGBTQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer) community; and

WHEREAS, the labor movement has become one of the strongest supporters of LGBTQ equality, and although our movement has been far from perfect in its history, it stands as one of the few key players left in fighting discriminatory legislation and hostile workplaces through lobbying and contract negotiations; and

WHEREAS, today, many of the LGBTQ population live in states that do not prohibit employment discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender expression/identity; and

WHEREAS, LGBTQ union members are twice as likely to receive survivor benefits for domestic partners than non-union members of their community. Union members are also only able to be fired with just cause and often have access to grievance procedures and arbitration, like every other union worker; and

WHEREAS, the rights that LGBTQ workers gain due to their union membership may provide some solace and workplace improvements, but many challenges still remain. Despite recent progress in visibility and legal protections, LGBTQ Americans, particularly Black trans women and other queer people of color, are more likely to be victims of sexual violence than any other community and are more likely to be victims of hate crime than any other minority group; and

WHEREAS, LGBTQ people also experience worse physical and mental health outcomes and face unique health challenges compared to their heterosexual and cisgender counterparts. LGBTQ individuals face major barriers when trying to access health services due to discrimination and cost-related hurdles, which causes even more harm considering they are three times more likely to suffer from a mental health condition;

THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, P@W adamantly condemns all attacks – politically, physically, and psychologically, on LGBTQ individuals in the workplace, in government, and in our communities; and

THEREFORE, BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, P@W members and chapters will continue to push for state and federal legislation barring workplace, employment, and housing discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity or expression; and

THEREFORE, BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, P@W will advocate for LGBTQ members of their unions to have a stronger voice in their workplaces and to have accommodations and policies that work for them. We will also push for LGBTQ friendly, and particularly trans-inclusive, healthcare that is safe and affordable for all, including accessible mental health treatment.

THEREFORE, BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, P@W will fight any and all deceptive “religious freedom” laws that allow discrimination against LGBTQ individuals wither it is in regards to bathroom access, adoption, health and pension benefits, or any other right awarded to every American; and

THEREFORE, BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, P@W will call upon law enforcement officials to vigorously prosecute perpetrators of hate crimes and will work with other labor and civil and human rights organizations and groups such as P@W through the AFL-CIO to counteract hate propaganda. We also call upon all of our union brothers and sisters to speak out against any LGBTQ harassment in our workplaces; and

THEREFORE, BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, P@W will commit to reaching out to LGBTQ workers and will strive to organize them. We will, however, be their supporters and their keepers whether they are union members or not-yet union members; and

THEREFORE, BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED, P@W strongly urges its chapters, NEB, and members to become and remain unapologetically involved in struggles to defend and expand the rights of the LGBTQ community.

Submitted by Francis Nichols III, DC-Baltimore Chapter
Approved August 25, 2018