Equality California
LGBT Rights Bill Clears Key Committee

2008 Press Releases

LGBT Rights Bill Clears Key Committee

Laird Measure, Sponsored by EQCA and NAACP, Ensures that State’s Nondiscrimination Standards Protect all Groups

SACRAMENTO – The Assembly Judiciary Committee today approved legislation that continues an historic multi-year effort by LGBT Caucus Chair, Assemblymember John Laird, D-Santa Cruz, and Equality California to overhaul California's anti-discrimination laws. Assemblymembers approved the Civil Rights Act of 2008 in committee today with a 7-3 vote.

Assembly Bill 2654 strengthens the state’s anti-bias policies by ensuring they include protections for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) Californians. It applies to sections of law that prohibit discrimination in insurance and government services and activities. AB 2654 is co-sponsored by the California State Conference of the NAACP.

“For several years, EQCA has been working closely with Assemblymember Laird and the NAACP to ensure that all Californians are protected from discrimination in all aspects of their lives," said EQCA Executive Director Geoff Kors. “During that time, we have secured the strongest civil rights protections in the nation. With AB 2654, we are continuing to make sure all of our anti-bias laws are consistent with one another so no individual or group is left unprotected.”

The Civil Rights Act of 2008 strengthens existing law to ensure protections based on gender, race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, disability, medical condition, marital status and sexual orientation.

"The Civil Rights Act of 2008 brings to 121 the number of key gaps in civil rights protections we will have filled over the past five years," said Assemblymember Laird. "I'm proud of this effort to address these legal codes that are deficient, because every Californian deserves the strongest level of protection available in state law."

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