LGBTQ Employees in Kansas Will Have Protections Again

In many states across the US, LGBTQ employees face workplace discrimination because of their sexuality daily, and Kansas is one state that does not have protections in place for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender employees. Laura Kelly, who defeated Kris Kobach for the position of governor in the midterm elections, said that she will provide LGBTQ employees with protections in the workplace, according to The Wichita Eagle.

Kansas did at one point have protections, as from 2007 to 2015, LGBTQ people were protected from firing, harassment, and discrimination based on sexuality. In 2015, however, former governor Sam Brownback removed those protections after same-sex marriage became legal nationwide, as be felt that the order created a new protected class through executive action rather than legislative. 

Laura Kelly, in a news conference that touched upon issues such as foster care, LGBTQ rights, and her approach to filling the new administration, claimed that she would bring back protections for LGBTQ people, which was one her campaign promises. According to the Human Rights Campaign, only a minority of states have full protections for LGBTQ in employment and in the middle of the country, ranging from North Dakota to Texas, there are no protections in place. However, things are changing in Kansas as two LGBTQ people, Brandon Woodard and Susan Ruiz, both won seats for the Kansas House of Representatives and as Sharice Davids, a Native-American lesbian won a seat in Kansas' third congressional district. 

As well as workplace discrimination, Kelly wants to require adoption agencies with state contracts not to discriminate against LGBTQ couples who want to adopt, as a policy that was instated allowed adoption agencies to turn away same-sec couples due to conflicts with religious beliefs. Groups who support this policy, such as the Family Policy Alliance of Kansas says that Kelly is "an enemy of life, family and religious freedom" and that her campaign promises are inconsistent with the values that the people of Kansas hold dear.

But judging by the results of the midterm election, do Kansans really hold those beliefs dearly?


h/t: The Wichita Eagle 

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