WASHINGTON – Following the Department of Labor’s move to prohibit discrimination by federal contractors and subcontractors on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity – implementing the Executive Order signed by President Obama in July – Rev. Dr. C. Welton Gaddy, president of Interfaith Alliance, released the following statement:

“This action marks another goalpost in the ongoing effort to end discrimination against, and to achieve full legal equality for, the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community. The result of a several year campaign on the part of various civil rights and religious organizations united in support of ending discrimination based on sexual orientation, today’s victory would not have been possible without the tireless efforts of countless activists nor, indeed, the leadership of President Obama and Secretary Perez.

“Though the members of Interfaith Alliance will not truly celebrate until we have ensured employment protections for all Americans, regardless of where they’re employed, for those of us dedicated to ensuring that federal money is never used to further a religious ideology, there is a special victory in barring discrimination by those receiving federal contracts. The Religious Right put an enormous amount of pressure on the administration to carve out a special exemption to all religious contractors to discriminate against the LGBT community, but the President and Secretary Perez stood strong in defense of the Constitution and equality for all Americans. I look forward to continuing to work with the administration, Congress, and the unyielding coalition we have built, to prohibit all forms of discrimination against the LGBT community, and to ensure that the federal government doesn’t fund religious discrimination of any kind.”

Interfaith Alliance is a network of people of diverse faiths and beliefs from across the country working together to build a resilient democracy and fulfill America’s promise of religious freedom and civil rights not just for some, but for all. We mobilize powerful coalitions to challenge Christian nationalism and religious extremism, while fostering a better understanding of the healthy boundaries between religion and government. We advocate at all levels of government for an equitable and just America where the freedoms of belief and religious practice are protected, and where all persons are treated with dignity and have the opportunity to thrive. For more information visit interfaithalliance.org.