It is an unfortunate fact that many important bills take time to come to fruition. Florida’s proposed ban on workforce discrimination aimed at the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community is one such slow-moving bill. An earlier blog post already brought the issue to light, but now the bill has been delayed.
Known as the Florida Competitive Workforce Act, the bill was filed by Senator Joseph Abruzzo. If passed, the act will amend Florida’s 1992 Civil Rights Act by extending workplace discrimination protections to LGBT workers. The act will protect this segment of the community from other forms of discrimination as well.
Although the bill seems to be seeing the light of day at last, one of the bill’s co-sponsors, Senator Jack Latvala, warns the public that it will take some time for the bill to pass. The senator added that he does not support any type of discrimination. Originally, the bill was scheduled to be heard by the Senate Judiciary Committee on Jan. 26, but had to be postponed for the following week.
Sponsors of the Florida Competitive Workforce Act seem positive about the bill, but it does have strong opposition from conservative organizations like the Florida Family Policy Council. The council believes the bill will, “create a new cause of action to sue employers and small businesses for discrimination.” However, the bill enjoys strong support from major businesses like Wells Fargo, Walt Disney World, AT&T and Marriott.
Until this bill or another like it is passed in Florida, the LGBT community can consider taking legal action when workplace discrimination occurs. Those who believe they are victims of this kind of discrimination should consider speaking with an employment attorney as quickly as possible.
Source: Tampa Bay Business Journal, “LGBT workforce discrimination ban on slow track,” Margie Menzel, Jan. 26, 2016