Laws introduced in the House of Representatives would give more protection to the equality clause of the Delaware Constitution.
House Bill 199 would add “sexual orientation”, “gender identity” and “disability” to the equality clause of the state constitution and add protection against discrimination on the basis of these characteristics.
If passed, Delaware would be the first state in the nation to have this protection for LGBTQ + residents in its constitution.
This new gender equality change was announced at a rally outside the Legislative Hall on Thursday as the state celebrates Pride Month.
Valerie Longhurst (D-Bear), the representative of the House Bill sponsor, says this is yet another movement to protect the rights of all Delawareeans.
“This law, announced today, represents an ongoing intergenerational effort to ensure that Delaware law and no legal barrier stand in the way of fair treatment for all people, regardless of other characteristics that lead us to do what we are. ” “Said Longhurst.
Senator Sarah McBride (D-Claymont), the highest-ranking elected transgender official in US history, describes the bill as significant.
“A Historic Day To Be A Disabled Person, A Historic Day To Be LGBTQ, A Historic Day To Be A Delaware As Our State Seeks To Become The First State In The Nation To Apply An Equal Rights Change of our Constitution, which is unambiguous. ” , specifically and undeniably protects the LGBTQ community, “said McBride.
The change must be adopted in the current biennial General Assembly and again in the 2023-2024 session in order to take effect.
Legislators created the sex equality clause in 2019 and then approved the inclusion of race, skin color and national origin as a classification earlier this year.
Legislation was delegated to the House Administration Committee.
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