On Thursday, Senator Jeff Clemens (D-Lake Worth), Representative Ben Diamond (D-St. Petersburg), and Representative Rene Plasencia (R-Titusville) have filed the Florida Competitive Workforce Act – a statewide bill that will finally protect LGBTQ Floridians from discrimination.
SB 666: Prohibited Discrimination
GENERAL BILL by Clemens
Prohibited Discrimination; Citing this act as the “Florida Competitive Workforce Act;”adding sexual orientation and gender identity as impermissible grounds for discrimination in public lodging establishments and public food service establishments; defining the terms “gender identity” and “sexual orientation”; adding sexual orientation and gender identity as impermissible grounds for discrimination with respect to the sale or rental of housing, provision of brokerage services, financing of housing or in residential real estate transactions, and land use decisions and in permitting of development, respectively, etc. – flsenate.gov
The FCWA would amend Ch. 760 of the Florida State Statutes (“The Florida Civil Rights Act of 1992“), which bars such discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, handicap, pregnancy, or marital status.
This is not the first time the bill has been filed. The initial attempt was in 2009 and its most failure was just last year in 2016. The bill died in the Economic Affairs Committee in the House and Judiciary in the Senate.
Florida needs to make sure it stays competitive in a global marketplace,” said Sen. Clemens.
“I am proud to file this bipartisan legislation in the Florida House,” said Rep. Diamond. “Young, well-educated workers are looking for diverse and inclusive communities to build their careers. By modernizing our civil rights laws, we can protect our LGBT community from discrimination, and make Florida a more competitive state in the global economy. That is good for our businesses, our workers, and for all Floridians.”
“This issue is critical to the state’s economic success. It’s imperative that businesses, employees and families know that Florida is open for business,” said Rep. Plasencia. “Florida must remain one of the top places in the nation to live, work and play, and by promising equal opportunity employment, and affirming basic human rights to the LGBT community, we can be confident in continued business growth.” – saintpetersblog.com
The bill has had bipartisan support before and has gained supporters each year it has been proposed.
Will the bill do better this time around?