WASHINGTON, D.C. — Joe Hansen, International President of the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union (UFCW), today released the following statement in response to reports that President Obama plans to sign an executive order banning federal contractors from discriminating against workers on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity.
“Denying someone a job or a promotion because of who they are runs counter to the American values of equality and opportunity. Yet in more than half of all states, Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) workers can be targeted based solely on their sexual orientation or gender identity.
“An executive order banning federal contractors from this type of discrimination is a step in the right direction and could benefit as many as 16 million workers. But tens of millions of others still need the protections that can only come with adoption of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), which passed the Senate on a strong bipartisan basis.
“At the UFCW, we have long been proud to have nondiscrimination language in our contracts. It is time for the law to catch up. The President is poised to act. The House should follow suit.”
The United Food and Commercial Workers International Union (UFCW) represents more than 1.3 million workers, primarily in the retail and meatpacking, food processing and poultry industries. The UFCW protects the rights of workers and strengthens America’s middle class by fighting for health care reform, living wages, retirement security, safe working conditions and the right to unionize so that working men and women and their families can realize the American Dream. For more information about the UFCW’s effort to protect workers’ rights and strengthen America’s middle class, visit www.ufcw.org, or join our online community at www.facebook.com/UFCWinternational and www.twitter.com/ufcw.