LGBT Employment Discrimination Still Legal in 2015, Viral Video Spotlights
In light of landmark marriage equality ruling, online spot about civil rights milestones asks on behalf of LGBT community, “What’s our year?”
(Los Angeles, CA) – It’s a touching video of real people talking about civil rights progress that’s helped them – and then the big reveal at the end hits you like a gut punch: it’s 2015, and it’s still legal to fire and discriminate against people simply because they’re LGBT.
The newest provocative spot from FCKH8.com (“Potty-Mouthed Princesses”) spotlights that despite progress in so many other areas, laws across the country continue to deny gay people basic anti-discrimination protections on the job.
In the video, available here [LINK], people from various walks of life - women, blacks, disabled people - each identify major civil rights milestones in America. Each speaker represents a year when others like them were finally offered legal protection from discrimination in the U.S. – from African Americans becoming citizens in 1866, to people with disabilities getting access to public places through the Americans with Disabilities ACT in 1990. Each is wearing a T-shirt printed with the year they gained a fundamental right.
When the two gay men holding hands who are the video’s final subject are revealed, their T-shirts display question marks. “It’s 2015, and there is still no federal law protecting LGBT people against discrimination. What’s our year?” they plead.
“In an era when it feels like progress is so rapid, including the Supreme Court ruling that was so important, we knew people would be shocked to discover there’s still this huge national inequality,” video producer Mike Kon said. “It sounds unbelievable and disappointing: you can get married on Saturday, but then you can still be legally fired for being LGBT when back at work on Monday.”
In addition to raising awareness of the issue through its viral video, FCKH8.com is encouraging people to get involved in the conversation on social media and support the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), legislation proposed in the United States Congress that would prohibit discrimination in hiring and employment on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity by employers. The social-change T-shirt company also encourages people to “speak out and stand out” for the cause with shirts that make provocative, change-motivated statements.
Reacting to the recent untested Equal Employment Opportunities Commission (EEOC) ruling that found that anti-LGBT job discrimination was already illegal under existing protections based on sex, FCKH8.com activists are pushing for more definitive on-the-job protections. “Congress need stop to step up to the plate and protect LGBT Americans from discrimination and finally pass explicit and clear job protections with ENDA” Kon said.