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Letter to Senate HELP Committee on Supporting the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) of 2013 (S. 815)

July 09, 2013

Dear Senator: 

On behalf of the more than three million members of the National Education Association, we urge you to support the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) of 2013 (S. 815) when it is marked up tomorrow. ENDA prohibits discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity in most workplaces, and extends protections currently provided on the basis of race, religion, national origin, age and disability—critical steps in addressing basic civil rights in the workplace. Votes on this bill may be included in the NEA Legislative Report Card for the 113th Congress. 

NEA has a long-standing commitment to the elimination of discrimination in the workplace in all facets of society. We believe that all persons must have equal opportunity for employment, promotion, compensation, and leadership. Too many educators have been the victims of pernicious and irrational employment discrimination based on sexual orientation. It is a protracted and sordid history that sadly continues to this very day. This invidious discrimination not only destroys the lives and careers of innocent and committed educational professionals, but also does real harm to the American system of public education and to the children that system serves.

Passage of ENDA will support the fundamental American ideal that individuals should be judged in the workplace by their ability to perform the required job rather than by prejudice and discrimination. Poll after poll of the American public demonstrates the overwhelming support, across party lines, for passage of such anti-employment discrimination legislation. 

NEA believes that America must take affirmative steps to end discrimination in the workplace and elsewhere. Now is the time for Congress to end this injurious and indefensible practice. We urge you to support ENDA. 


Mary Kusler
Director of Government Relations