Poll: Only 13% of Americans know gays do not have federal discrimination protections

A large majority of Americans are currently unaware that gay and lesbian people are not protected against discrimination under the workplace, a poll has found.

YouGov and the Huffington Post conducted a survey which found that a majority of Americans are unaware gays and lesbians are not protected under federal from discrimination.

69% believed it was illegal to fire someone for being gay or lesbian under federal law, 18% were unsure. Just 13% of those surveyed knew gays and lesbians do not have federally protected job security. Read more »

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Key Ruling On New Standard For Review Of Anti-Gay Laws Will Stand

Key Ruling On New Standard For Review Of Anti-Gay Laws Will Stand

A key federal appeals court decision to review claims of discrimination based on sexual orientation with heightened scrutiny will stand.

The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals turned down a request for a larger panel of the appeals court to reconsider the decision. The ruling subjects all sexual orientation claims within the 9th Circuit’s nine states — including marriage-discrimination claims — to heightened scrutiny, which means treating gay, lesbian, and bisexual people differently under the law will be more difficult to justify when challenged in court. The ruling already has had an impact on the cases challenging Nevada and Idaho’s marriage laws. Read more »

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Mayors Take Stand Against Their States' Anti-Gay Policies

Mayors Take Stand Against Their States' Anti-Gay Policies

City leaders from several states with gay marriage bans took a stand for marriage equality Monday at the U.S. Conference of Mayors in Dallas, when they signed a resolution calling on the Supreme Court to end marriage discrimination nationwide.

Despite their states' bans on same-sex marriage, mayors from Arizona, Texas, Ohio, Colorado, Missouri and Georgia were instrumental in the resolution’s passage. Among the signers were Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton, Houston Mayor Annise D. Parker and Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed. Read more »

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U.S. Mayors Call On Supreme Court To Rule In Favor Of Marriage Equality

U.S. Mayors Call On Supreme Court To Rule In Favor Of Marriage Equality

Mayors from across the United States on Monday called on federal courts, including the Supreme Court, to rule against state bans excluding gay couples from marriage.

“The United States Conference of Mayors reaffirms its support of the freedom to marry for same-sex couples and urges the federal courts, including the U.S. Supreme Court, to speedily bring national resolution by ruling in favor of the freedom to marry nationwide,” reads a resolution overwhelmingly approved by the U.S. Conference of Mayors at its annual meeting in Dallas.

According to a statement released by Mayors for the Freedom to Marry, a group of over 450 mayors who support marriage equality, Mayor Greg Stanton of Phoenix (pictured) led in introducing the resolution. Read more »

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Former BP CEO John Browne on coming out in business

Former BP CEO John Browne on coming out in business

This post is excerpted from “The Glass Closet” (HarperBusiness, June 2014) by John Browne. Visit The Glass Closet website and follow @glassclosetorg on Twitter.

It was time to leave the building.

At 5 p.m. on May 1, 2007, a few hours after resigning as chief executive of BP, I stepped into the elevator on the fifth floor of the London headquarters and began my descent. When the doors opened, I had two options. I could make my way to an underground garage without being noticed and escape by car. Or I could walk out the main entrance, where about 30 press photographers had spent the day waiting. Read more »

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Same-Sex Marriage Good for Wedding Business

Same-Sex Marriage Good for Wedding Business

June is Gay Pride Month and an opportunity to reflect on how same-sex equality and marriage has been good for business in the United States. The U.S., as of 2014, is one of 15 countries to have ruled in favor of gay marriage. Since Massachusetts became the first state to legalize gay marriage in 2004, same-sex marriages have been legalized in 19 states total. Since that time, many of the states that have elected to legalize marriage for homosexual couples have found the fiscal rewards to be substantial. Read more »

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Obama says to bar LGBT discrimination by federal contractors

Obama says to bar LGBT discrimination by federal contractors

President Barack Obama said on Tuesday he will sign an executive order barring federal contractors from discriminating against employees based on their sexual orientation, but told gay rights activists they need to keep up the pressure on Congress to pass a broader law.

Drawing a lengthy standing ovation from a lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) gala raising money for the Democratic National Committee, Obama said the order was the right thing to do for human rights and the economy.

"We don't benefit as a country or an economy - businesses don't benefit - if they're leaving talent off the field," Obama said. Read more »

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BP's Former CEO Explains Why LGBT Equality Makes Good Business Sense

BP's Former CEO Explains Why LGBT Equality Makes Good Business Sense

On 2 June 2013, I wrote an editorial in the Financial Times arguing the case for gay marriage. The House of Lords would vote on a measure legalising same-sex marriage the following day. I supported the bill as a pragmatic legislator, as a gay man and as a human being. But I also supported it because I am a businessman.

Business does not usually take a position on the institution of marriage. But, in my time as chief executive, I learned that any policy that fosters an inclusive environment makes good business sense. Paul Reed, my former colleague at BP and now a senior executive there, puts it best: "I don’t want people saving a quarter of their brain to hide who they are. I want them to apply their whole brain to their job." Read more »

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