Prompted by outcry, the Department of Commerce clarifies that its equal employment policy is inclusive of LGBT+ people

After LGBT+ advocates raised an outcry over the Department of Commerce’s apparent erasure of LGBT+ people from its equal employment policy, the policy has been corrected on the Department’s website and with the Federal Register,

Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross had previously signed a version of the equal employment policy that made no mention of “sexual orientation” or “gender identity.” The correction brings the Department of Commerce’s policy back in line with federal law, including an executive order issued by former President Barack Obama, as well as a 2015 amendment to the Civil Service Reform Act.

LGBT+ rights organizations are keeping a close watch on the actions of federal agencies under Trump appointees. Previously, President Trump violated a campaign promise by quietly signing an executive order killing the funding for the verification mechanism necessary to ensure that federal contractors have nondiscrimination policies inclusive of LGBT+ people, making it easy for companies that discriminate against LGBT+ people to continue to receive federal contracts.

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